The Old and New Testaments were translated into the languages of the Eastern Christians: the Peshitta, the Syriac version of the Bible, was completed in the 5th century, when the Coptic version began. The translation of the Hebrew Bible by Saadia Gaon (10th century) has been preserved, as have previous Arabic manuscripts of the New Testament.
From the 16th century, scores of religious figures – Jesuits and Franciscans in particular – travelled to the East in a bid to rally to Rome the believers of the separate Churches by founding Eastern Catholic Churches. Protestants also journeyed eastbound, but their aim was rather to evangelise Muslims.
In the mid 19th century, Catholic congregations (Sisters of Charity of Saint Vincent De Paul, Brothers of the Christian Schools, Missionaries of Africa, etc.) founded schools and dispensaries across several Eastern countries – at a time when such congregations were not all legally re-established in France.
Studies and articles on the French religious protectorate (1535) in the East; on the "dispute over the Holy Places" and on the French expedition to Syria (1860-1861) following the massacres of Christians.