Hazim's Funeral Held in Beirut as He Will Be Laid to Rest in Damascus

Hundreds attended the funeral service at the Ashrafieh church in honor of the 92-years old patriarch.

The delegation of the Syriac Orthodox Church of Antioch offers
prayers for the departed Greek Orthodox Patriarch Ignatius IV Hazim

Beirut: The funeral of the late Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch and all the East Ignatius IV Hazim was be held in Beirut on Sunday ahead of being laid to rest in Damascus, Syria.

The funeral was held at noon at Saint Nicholas Cathedral in Beirut's Ashrafiyeh district and attended by a number of politicians, including Lebanese President Michel Suleiman and Prime Minister Najib Miqati.

Hazim's coffin was then transferred to the Mariamite Cathedral in Damascus where it will be put on display until Monday afternoon when it will be buried at the cathedral's graveyard.

Hazim passed away on Wednesday after suffering a stroke.

Prime Minister Najib Mikati announced Sunday as an official day of mourning for the patriarch.

The patriarch’s passing has been described by President Michel Sleiman and Prime Minister Najib Mikati and most of the Lebanese parties as a loss for Lebanon and the region, and he was praised for believing and maintaining the principle of coexistence. He was dubbed as a man of moderation by Lebanese officials.

Hazim, who served 33 years as patriarch, was born in the village of Mhardeh near Hama in Syria in 1920. He was consecrated as a bishop in 1961, and was elected as the Metropolitan of the Latakia province in Syria in 1970.
Hazim was chosen to become Antioch's 157th patriarch on July 2, 1979.

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