Syria is found in southwest Asia, on the east coast of the Mediteranean Sea. Syria shares borders with Turkey, Iraq, Jordan, and Israel. It is fortunate to be located on the fertile Mediterranean coast - this allows agriculture to play a critical role in the country's economy.


Population: 17.9 million (2013 est.)
Ethnic Groups: Arab (90.3%), Kurds, Armenians, and other (9.7%)
Languages: Arabic (official), Kurdish, Armenian, Aramaic, Circassian (widely understood); French, English (somewhat understood)
Religions: Sunni Muslim (74%), Alawite, Druze, other Muslim (16%), Christian (10%)


Syrian Population:
In Canada: 31,375
In the GTA: 6,005
In the City of Toronto: 2,175

Primary Areas of Settlement in the GTA (Social Atlas):
Vaughan, Brampton, Mississauga, City of Toronto (Ward 42 Scarborough Rouge River)

Syria became independent from France in 1946. Political unrest and economic sanctions have contributed to Syria's troubled role in the Middle East. Recently, international pressure has forced Syria to take a more moderate position on its foreign policies. Today, Syria's economy is dependent on agriculture, oil, and tourism. Economic progress is being made, but is slow. Syria has been a secular state since independence. The vast majority of the population is Muslim, but the Christian minority enjoys significantly more freedom than in other areas of the Middle East. Nevertheless, they do face discrimination (for example, in trying to find housing.)

Map of Services and Churches in the GTA: 

Social and Settlement Services in the GTA


Churches in the GTA

St Mary's Syrian Orthodox Church of Canada
1525 Kenmuir Avenue
Mississauga, ON
L5G 4B6
Phone: 905-271-0150

St. Barsaumo Syriac Orthodox Church
72 Birchmount Road
Toronto, ON
M1N 3J6
Phone: 416-694-4500

St. Peter’s Syriac Orthodox Church of Canada
1550 S Gateway Road, Unit 315
Mississauga, ON
L4W 5G6

Saint Behnam Orthodox Church 
50 Erie Street
Toronto, ON
M6L 2P6


Central Intelligence Agency. (2014, June 20). The World Factbook: Syria. Retrieved July 9, 2014, from

Encyclopedia of the Nations. (n.d.). Syria. Retrieved July 9, 2014, from

Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada. (2009, October 15). Cultural Information - Syria. Retrieved July 9, 2014, from 

Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada. (2011, December 15). Overview - Syria. Retrieved July 9, 2014, from

Mandryk, J. (2010). Operation World: The Definitive Prayer Guide to Every Nation (7th ed.). Colorado Springs: Biblica Publishing.

Statistics Canada. (2011, April 7). 2006 Census of Canada: Topic-based tabulations/Ethnic Origin, Single and Multiple Ethnic Origin Responses and
Sex for the Population of Canada, Provinces, Territories, Census Metropolitan Areas and Census Agglomerations, 2006 Census - 20% Sample
Data. Retrieved July 15, 2014, from

Syrians. (2009). In T. L. Gall & J. Hobby (Eds.), Worldmark Encyclopedia of Cultures and Daily Life (2nd ed., Vol. 4, pp. 920-926). Detroit: Gale. 
Retrieved July 16, 2014, from