Last April, the Prince Gharios Foundation in Germany (Prinz Gharios Stiftung) helped its first project on German soil: the construction of a church for Christian refugees in the refugee camp near Warburg.
“In charge of the project is His Grace Coptic Archbishop Anba Damian, who has been running the Coptic Orthodox monastery in Brenkhausen for the past 24 years”, said Dr. H.C. Michael Hesemann, the president of the Foundation. His Grace takes care of the refugee camp in which Copts and Syrian Christians live. So far, there has been no way to celebrate the liturgy in the orthodox rite. Now a building is to be renovated and redesigned for this purpose. The concept was welcomed by the board of the Foundation, because of the importance of allowing Christian refugees to exercise their faith and tradition.
The Prince Gharios foundation, founded in June 2015, is under the Royal House of Ghassan and is dedicated to the Christians of the Middle East – in their old and new home. ” In the orient stood the cradle of our faith. That is why we are associated with them in particular “, explains Dr. Hesemann, a historian and author, “ their tradition is so valuable because it has received the heritage of the first Christians. We must not allow it to fall victim to war and terror.”
The Foundation’s patron, HIRH Prince Gharios El Chemor of Ghassan Al-Numan VIII descends from the El Chemor Sheikhs, a Christian princely family from Lebanon direct descendants and heirs of the Ghassanid Kings. His ancestors fled to Brazil over a hundred years ago before the genocide of the Ottomans. He’s the head of the Royal House of Ghassan accredited by the United Nations with the Special Consultative Status.
For The German project, the foundation collected donations at a charity dinner in Zons near Düsseldorf last October and in a Christmas Charity Concert in Campo Santo Tutonico Church in the Vatican last December.
The date when the donation was given was very symbolic and auspicious, the feast of st. Markus, whom the Copts worship as the founder of their church.