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His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon, sent letters to His Beatitude, Patriarch John X of Antioch and All the East, and His Eminence, Metropolitan Joseph of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America, expressing condolences and offering prayers on the repose of His Grace, Bishop Antoun [Khouri].
Bishop Antoun fell asleep in the Lord on Monday, October 2, 2017. His repose was announced in a statement issued by Metropolitan Joseph, who is attending sessions of the Holy Synod of Antioch in Shwayya, Lebanon.
“Words cannot begin to describe our debt of gratitude to His Grace nor our sense of loss at his falling asleep,” Metropolitan Joseph wrote. “As our senior, and for many years our only, auxiliary bishop, he traveled the width and breadth of our God-protected Archdiocese. He was sincerely loved by all—young and old—and he will be greatly missed…. We are comforted and assured that he will eternally pray for his people at the throne of God.”
Bishop Antoun was born in Damascus, Syria on January 17, 1931. At the age of 14, he entered Minor Seminary at Lebanon’s Balamand Monastery, from which he received his diploma in theology. In 1983, he was consecrated to the episcopate at Saint Nicholas Cathedral, Brooklyn, NY, after which he faithfully served for many years as Auxiliary to His Eminence, the late Metropolitan Philip [Saliba], and later as Bishop of the Antiochian Diocese of Miami and the South. He retired in July 2017.
The text of Metropolitan Tikhon’s letter to Patriarch John X appears below. A similar letter was addressed to Metropolitan Joseph.
Letter of Condolence of Metropolitan Tikhon to Patriarch John X of Antioch and All the East
on the Repose of Bishop Antoun
October 2, 2017
His Beatitude John X
Patriarch of Antioch and All the East
Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch
PO Box 9, Damascus
Your Beatitude, Beloved Brother in the Lord and Concelebrant,
It is with sorrow that I learned today of the falling asleep of His Grace, Bishop Antoun.
His Grace was a very good friend of the Orthodox Church in America. As a graduate of, and instructor at, Saint Vladimir’s Seminary, Bishop Antoun took a keen interest in the formation and education of the students from the Antiochian Archdiocese. His kindness and love for all those under his pastoral care earned him respect among his brother bishops and all those whom he served so faithfully.
On behalf of the Holy Synod of Bishops, the clergy, and the faithful of the Orthodox Church in America, I offer my prayers for the newly departed servant of God, Bishop Antoun, that his soul may find peace in the mansions of the righteous, and that Your Beatitude as well as the hierarchs, clergy, and faithful who loved His Grace will receive the consolation of our Lord as we mourn the passing of our brother hierarch.
With sincere condolences and in the hope of the Resurrection,
Archbishop of Washington
Metropolitan of All America and Canada