HomeNewsWorldOldest Christian Communities in...

Oldest Christian Communities in Turkey Fear Extinction

The world’s oldest Christian communities in Turkey are fighting a legal battle with the government, Al-Monitor reports.

The Syriac Orthodox Church is defending its ownership of churches, monasteries and other properties in southeastern Turkey. Authorities have confiscated 50 properties of the Church, saying the ownership of the deeds has lapsed.

“Our churches and monasteries are what root Syriacs in these lands; our existence relies on them. They are our history and what sustains our culture,” stated Ergun. “While the country should be protecting this heritage, we instead see our culture is at risk.”

Kuryakos Ergun, the chairman of the Mor Gabriel Monastery Foundation, revealed that the government seized two monasteries built 1,500 years ago. He fears that the confiscation of historical monuments would lead to the extinction of the country’s indigenous culture.

“Our churches and monasteries are what root Syriacs in these lands; our existence relies on them. They are our history and what sustains our culture,” stated Ergun. “While the country should be protecting this heritage, we instead see our culture is at risk.”

Mor Gabriel, one of the world’s oldest monasteries, appealed to the government to stop taking Christian properties. However, the appeal was rejected and the government ordered the liquidation of the community’s assets instead.

In 2008, the country’s land officials started to update its national registry, including redrawing the boundaries around Mor Gabriel, The Daily Mail reports.

The monks disclosed that the municipal reforms left the monastery with little property and the lands they previously owned were now turned over to the state.

Erol Dora, a Syriac and one of the few Christian lawmakers in the Turkish Parliament, revealed that the government started “transferring to state institutions assets whose status it had determined were no longer valid.”

Dora explained that the properties used by the Syriac communities should’ve been returned to Mor Gabriel. “Turkey must adopt policies that protect citizens of different faiths. This has to be part of efforts to comply with modern democratic principles and rule of law.”

The Christian lawmaker is pushing for the government to respect the rights of minority groups in Turkey.

Sources:
Al-monitorcom. (2017). Al-Monitor. http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2017/07/turkey-syriac-christians-fear-land-dispute.html

Dailymailcouk. (2017). Mail Online. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4676494/Properties-confiscated-ancient-Christian-community.html

- A word from our sponsors -

spot_img

Most Popular

Subscribe to our newsletter

To be the first to.know what's happening in the Christian community

More from Author

Group Gives 10,000 Bibles to London’s Children

The Trinitarian Bible Society announced that over 10,000 Bibles have been given to London schools within three years.

Prayer, Faith Can Help Teens with Mental Health Issues

A study on teens and young adults confirmed that those who pray and have a relationship with God were more likely to flourish in life more than their peers.

More than 7,000 Kids Decide to Follow Jesus –YFC

The Youth for Christ announced that 7,323 kids and teens decided to follow Jesus Christ this year, twice the record reported in 2021.

Billy Graham Archive & Research Center is Now Open

The new Billy Graham Archive and Research Center opened in Charlotte, North Carolina on November 7, the birthday of the late evangelist.

- A word from our sponsors -

spot_img

Group Gives 10,000 Bibles to London’s Children

The Trinitarian Bible Society announced that over 10,000 Bibles have been given to London schools within three years.

Prayer, Faith Can Help Teens with Mental Health Issues

A study on teens and young adults confirmed that those who pray and have a relationship with God were more likely to flourish in life more than their peers.

Count Your Blessings Daily, Not Just Once a Year

I heard about a family seated around their table looking at the beautiful golden-brown turkey. Dressing and gravy, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, various vegetables, and casseroles complemented the turkey. From the oldest to the youngest, they went around and expressed their praise.

More than 7,000 Kids Decide to Follow Jesus –YFC

The Youth for Christ announced that 7,323 kids and teens decided to follow Jesus Christ this year, twice the record reported in 2021.

Billy Graham Archive & Research Center is Now Open

The new Billy Graham Archive and Research Center opened in Charlotte, North Carolina on November 7, the birthday of the late evangelist.

MercyMe hopes new album can help heal divisions: ‘We’ve got a divided body of Christ’ 

Bart Millard and his MercyMe bandmates began writing some of the songs on their latest album in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, long before the nation was divided over issues that now dominate the headlines.  Millard, though, believes the album’s release in 2022 had been God’s plan...

‘Praise the Lord!’ Ukrainian Christians Cheer Kherson Liberation

Ukrainian Christians celebrate the liberation of Kherson with cheers of praise and thanksgiving, seven months after Russia occupied the city.

JESUS Film Makes History, Now Translated in 2,000 Languages

The JESUS film makes history as it is now translated into its 2,000th language making it the most translated film of all time.

U.S. Renews Calls Against Blasphemy Laws

The United States joined 15 countries in expressing concern over international blasphemy laws.

Franklin Graham Attracts Record-breaking Audience in Italy

More than 13,200 people gathered for an evangelical outreach led by Franklin Graham in Milan, Italy on October 29.

A Hindu PM Marks a Historic Moment in the UK

Rishi Sunak becomes Britain's first Hindu prime minister. He is also the first person of color to hold the highest office in the UK.

A New Biblical Worldview Study Series is Now Available Online

Family Research Council and Summit Ministries announced a partnership launching a new biblical worldview series called Now We Live.