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Our Eparch
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On 16 September 2011, Patriarch Gregory III Laham, consecrated Bishop-elect Robert Rabbat the third Eparch of Australia, New Zealand and All Oceania. His enthronement took place at St Michael the Archangel Cathedral on
8 October 2011.
His Grace, The Most Reverend Robert Rabbat DD was born in Beirut, Lebanon on 14 February 1960. He began his schooling at the Collège des Frères de La Salle (De La Salle Brothers) but in 1975 the ongoing conflict in Lebanon, compelled his family to move, and he graduated from Achrafieh High School. 

In 1979, Bishop Rabbat moved to the United States of America (USA) to study engineering at Ohio State University. In 1982, he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering, and a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics. 

Bishop Rabbat’s civil career, as a technical consultant, saw him responsible for operations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, supervising desalinisation and water treatment projects with Dupont de Nemours International and as a project manager for the 3rd International Conference on Road Maintenance, with the International Road Federation. In 1989, Bishop Rabbat entered St Paul’s Institute of Philosophy and Theology in Harissa, Lebanon as a seminarian. He graduated with a double licentiate (Master’s Degree) in Philosophy and Theology. He was ordained in 1994 by the late Archbishop Habib Basha of Beirut and was assigned to St Anthony the Great Church in Achrafieh, Lebanon. 

In August 1995, Bishop Rabbat returned to the USA to serve at St Michael the Archangel Church in Hammond, Indiana. In 1997, Bishop Rabbat attained a Master’s Degree in Communication from Perdue University, Indiana. 

In 1999, in addition to Bishop Rabbat’s pastoral work, the then Eparch of the USA, Bishop John Adel Elya, appointed Bishop Rabbat, editor-in-chief of Sophia, the Melkite diocesan magazine. 

In 2000, he served at St John the Baptist Melkite Church, in Northlake, Illinois and Holy Saviour Mission, in Oak Lawn, Illinois. During his time in Northlake, Illinois, Bishop Rabbat’s keen interest in ecumenical inclusiveness, led him to initiate an active relationship between the four Antiochian Churches in the Metro-Chicago area―Antiochian Orthodox, Syriac Orthodox, Maronite and Melkite. These faith communities came together in sharing spiritual and social events and did so in fulfilment of our Lord’s Prayer that his followers should be one Church.

In 2003, Bishop Rabbat was nominated to the Board of Directors of Télé-Lumière International, Lebanon. Télé-Lumière International, is the paramount Christian television broadcaster in the Middle East. It is committed to the promotion of harmonious relations between the various ethno-religious communities of the region especially Christian and Muslim. In 2004, he was elected Vice-President of the Board of Directors.

In 2005, Bishop Rabbat was appointed Rector of the Cathedral of the Annunciation, Boston, and was elevated to the dignitary of Archimandrite. 

On 25 June 2010, the Holy Synod of the Melkite Church elected him to the episcopate (Office of Eparch or Bishop). His appointment as Eparch of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church of Australia, New Zealand and All Oceania was confirmed by Pope Benedict XVI on 14 June 2011.

On 16 September 2011, Bishop Rabbat received episcopal consecration at the Church of St John Chrysostom in Beirut, Lebanon. The principal consecrator was His Beatitude, Gregory III Laham, the Patriarch of Antioch, who was assisted by Archbishop Cyril Boutros and Archbishop Issam John Darwish.

On 8 October 2011, His Grace, The Most Reverend Robert Rabbat, the third Melkite Catholic Eparch of Australia, New Zealand and All Oceania, was enthroned at St Michael’s Cathedral Darlington, Sydney.

Bishop Rabbat is a member of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference and the Bishops Commission for Ecumenism and Inter-religious Relations.

Bishop Rabbat is the President of the Australasian-Middle East Christian Apostolic Churches.
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"Jesus himself stood among them and said to them 'Peace be with you.'"
- Luke 24:36
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