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Orthodox patriarchs and primates at the Orthodox Academy of Crete (CNS)

Pope Francis sent a message of support ahead of the opening of the Pan-Orthodox Council

Syrian children wait for treatment at the hospital of a refugee camp (AP)

The joint Day of Prayer for Peace, sponsored by Aid to the Church in Need, is one of several initiatives to promote peace in the troubled country

Pope Francis celebrates Mass for the Jubilee of Deacons in St Peter's Square (AP)

A daily guide to what’s happening in the Catholic Church

Pope Francis  in St Peter's Square (CNS)

At the end of his weekly general audience, the Pope referred to a string of attacks to hit ‘beloved Syria’

A Christian neighbourhood in Aleppo (picture courtesy of Aid to the Church in Need)

Fr Alsabagh says all but the poorest have escaped the city and an ‘eerie silence, like a cemetery’, fills the streets

A man carries a child after last week's airstrikes on Aleppo (Photo: Validated UGC via AP video)

The longer we put off dealing with failed states, the harder it becomes

In this image made from video and posted online from Validated UGC, a Civil Defense worker carries a child after airstrikes hit Aleppo, Syria, last Thursday (Validated UGC via AP video)

Seeing refugees being resettled in Canada ‘hurts us a lot’, says Archbishop of Aleppo

Pope Francis arriving for a special Holy Year audience with the armed forces, in St Peter's Square (AP)

Speaking to to the faithful in St Peter’s Square, Pope Francis also appealed for peace in Syria

A painting of Mary and the Christ Child is is seen in 2014 at the damaged St Thecla Orthodox monastery in the predominantly Christian town of Maaloula, Syria (CNS photo/Youssef Badawi, EPA)

Project is the ‘first concrete outcome’ of the Pope’s meeting with Patriarch Kirill

Magnus Macfarlane-Barrow launched Mary's Meals from his father's shed in Dalmally, Scotland

Pilot scheme will feed 1,000 children at school on outskirts of Beirut