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King University News :: Monk Elia Khalifé to Speak at King College

Father Elia N. Khalifé will speak at King College on Monday, Oct. 8 at 9:15 a.m. in Memorial Chapel as part of the Buechner (Beek-ner) Institute Lecture Series, which is co-sponsored by Bristol Herald Courier.  Father Khalifé is a research associate of the Oriental Faculty for Oxford University in the United Kingdom and Monk of the Orthodox Christian Patriarchate of Antioch and All the East, the Greek Orthodox Church considered to be the successor to the community founded by the Apostles Peter and Paul.

Father Khalifé’s work has appeared in The Antiochian, the newsletter of Antioch: A Center for Antiochian Orthodox Christian Studies and Research, Oxford, U.K.  He also edits and reviews books and articles in Arabic and English.

Father Khalifé earned a degree in Theology from Balamand University, Lebanon in 1996.  He has worked at Oxford University for over a decade.  He has devoted more than 20 years to studying, researching and teaching in the areas of Eastern Christian theology, history, archaeology, linguistics, palaeography, and manuscripts, among other fields.  Father Khalife participates in archaeological and speleological surveys and excavations in the Near and Middle East and catalogues and digitizes historical manuscripts for museums, universities, and libraries.  He is also a member of St. Grigol Peradze Insitution, Warsaw, Poland, and Tbilisi, Georgia. 

Father Khalifé has organized international conferences and Christian pilgrimages, founded a number of foundations and centers dedicated to the study and research of Antiochian heritage, and published research articles, book reviews and newsletters in Arabic and English, including his forthcoming work, “Catalogue of the Corpus of the Antiochian Chalcedonian Orthodox Christian Manuscripts: Aramaic (CPA), Syriac, Greek, Georgian and Arabic.

“Abouna Elia (Abouna is Father in Arabic) brings a rich background to his study of the traditions of Antiochian Orthodox Christianity,” said Dr. Gerald Mattingly, professor of Bible and Honors program coordinator for Johnson University.  “He has an insatiable curiosity about the texts that have kept that tradition alive over the centuries – reaching back to the time of the ancient Church.  His work with the Antioch Centre, in Oxford, takes him to many countries in search of ancient manuscripts and early books that reflect this deep history and profound spirituality. 

“Always aware of his monastic connections, Father Elia is still warm and gregarious – and has a good sense of humor,” continued Dr. Mattingly.  “The research center in Oxford puts him in contact with some of the world’s leading scholars that approach a particular path of church history through close contact with valuable Greek, Syriac, and Arabic documents.  His visit to the Southeast gives us a rare opportunity to have contact with this ancient heritage.”

Father Elia N. Khalifé will speak at King College on Monday, Oct. 8 at 9:15 a.m. in King’s Memorial Chapel.  The event is free and open to the public.  For more information, contact Dale Brown at 423.652.4156 or visit


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