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Welcome The Asylum Seeker Parish Support
Welcoming Syrian Refugees in Hampton Park

Sts Peter and Paul Catholic Melkite parish is helping Syrian refugees to settle in Hampton Park. Parish Priest, Fr Elias Matta says that the families are very happy to be in their new country, arranging for their children to be enrolled at school and are facing up to all the challenges of settling in. Although the families are receiving rental assistance from the Australian Government, they are having difficulty meeting high rents and need additional financial support.  

The Parish is helping with socialisation, entry into schools and study support, providing foodstuffs and living essentials, etc.
Following the October 2015 Strengthening Parish Support for Asylum Seekers Forum, Fr Simon Grainger, Parish Priest and parishioners of St Thomas More Parish, Belgrave, have joined with Sts Peter and Paul Parish to support the recent arrivals. Currently St Thomas More is helping three families, and expects this to increase in coming months. 
If you or your parish would like to support these Syrian families, please contact Fr Matta on Tel (03) 9702 9806 or email Adrian.Foley@css.org.au  

Who are the Melkites? 
Melkite Catholics are an autonomous Church which was reunited with Rome in the 18th century, after having been separated as part of the Orthodox schism in the 11th Century.

Melkite Bishop Robert Rabbat DD is a member of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference. Melkite parishes are under his jurisdiction – in Victoria, St Joseph’s Parish, Fairfield, Sts Peter and Paul, Hampton Park and St Elias the Prophet in Sunshine, together with parishes in other States.  Melkites follow the Byzantine rite in the Arabic language. The word Melkite comes from the Arabic word malek or melek, meaning king or emperor. This relates to the Melkites’ support for the Byzantine emperors for the orthodox Christology of Chalcedon (451). 

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