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ARCHIMANDRITE SOPHRONUS KHOURY
1872 - 6/7/1952
Born and educated in Beirut, Lebanon. Archimandrite (Monseigneur) Khoury joined the Basilian Chouerite Order of St John the Baptist at Khonshara, Lebanon in 1890. After completing his training, he was ordained and subsequently held positions in the See of Beirut.
Monseigneur Khoury arrived in Sydney in 1908 at the request of Monseigneur Mansour to assist him in the Parish of St Michael’s in Waterloo. He remained at St Michael’s until 1925, when he left to establish the first Melkite church, in Brisbane, Queensland. Monseigneur Khoury lived with the Ellis family, originally from Zahlé, Lebanon and would celebrate Divine Liturgy at St Mary’s Church, South Brisbane.
With the support of his small, generous, and determined Arabic community, he raised enough funds to purchase land. On 7 March 1929, Monseigneur Khoury laid the foundation stone for St Clement’s Melkite Church, at 74 Ernest Street, South Brisbane.
Soon after, he purchased the home adjoining the Church and converted it to the presbytery, which became the centre of social gatherings.
Monseigneur Khoury dedicated his life to St Clement’s Melkite community and is remembered as ministering to all ‘as one family, with equal devotion in true ecumenical spirit’.
Monseigneur Khoury died aged 80 and is buried in Brisbane, Queensland.
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