During two years, the cathedral remains this way. The area does not live anymore, it has been abandoned.
Bishop Arbach suspends the reconstruction of his religious building until 2016. Since the evacuation of the last occupied area, the situation has calmed down and one part of inhabitants has come back.
To Bishop Arbach’s asking, SOS Chrétiens d’Orient and Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) undertake the project of reconstruction. The 26th of March 2016, after a mass celebrated on the spot, Bishop Rey, bishop of Fréjus-Toulon, and Bishop Arbach inaugurate the reconstruction of the cathedral by tossing the first sections of concrete. Henceforth, the cathedral rises from the ashes.
During many months, Syrians repaired the icons seriously damaged, the columns, the altar and the cupola partially destroyed and the desecrated priests’ graves in the crypt.
From June to December 2016, French volunteers come to support Syrians on the building site. Finally, the 1st of December 2017, Homs greek melkite catholic cathedral is consecrated again during a mass attended by the catholic greek melkite patriarch, His Beatitude Joseph Arabi, in particular attendance of the apostolic nuncio of Syria, the cardinal Mario Sezari, Bishop Jean Abdou Arbach, Melkite archbishop of Homs, Hama and Yabroud.
Furthermore, several volunteers from the association were present at mass. It goes without saying that those considerable efforts have been crowned by a church now available for the religious practice. SOS Chrétiens d’Orient thanks the volunteers who have participated in the rebuilding and the donators who have contributed 115 240$ to the reconstruction of this cathedral and at the same time to the preservation of the syrian cultural heritage.