Syriac Orthodox Church of Antioch

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History of the Za'faraan Monastery

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This monastery was built, east of Mardin, Turkey, more than eleven centuries ago. It was inhabited by many Patriarchs, bishops and monks. It became for some time the most renowned center for monasticism, and the see of the Syriac Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch. It acquired its name from the abundance of Saffron (Za’faran) which surrounded the monastery. Within the premises of this monastery, three ancient churches were built, in different eras: The Church of Mor Hananya, the Sayyida Church (Virgin Mary) and Church of the Patriarchal Throne. Many types of Council were convened in it, especially during the process of electing Patriarchs. Famous learned men graduated from this famous Center of Education throughout the years. Many of them became later on, Patriarchs, Maphryonos of the East: Tekrit in Iraq and India) Bishops and saints; who left valuable legacy of Syriac Literature in religion and philosophy, which still inspires knowledge seekers worldwide.

The writer is Aphram the monk, who became Patriarch Aphram I Barsoum. Many religious dignitaries were buried in this monastery, including clergy who spent most of their lives in monastic services.
It is so enriching to read this book, which gives you a historic glimpse of the Golden Age of Monasticism in the Syriac Orthodox Church of Mesopotamia. [English]

Written by Aphram I Barsoum.
Translated by Matti Moosa.
Available in softcover.


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