The social fabric of society is being "attacked," he said, and "the deep wounds, above all in these children, are worse than what is seen."
The number of civilian victims of the war has drastically increased in recent weeks, after Russian-backed Syrian forces on Feb. 18 launched a series of deadly airstrikes and artillery fire on besieged Easter Ghouta enclave, which sits just northeast of Damascus.
Home to some 400,000 people, Eastern Ghouta is the last rebel-held area east of Damascus and has been a target of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces since 2013 in a bid to drive the rebels out.
According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, some 900 civilians have died so far in the fighting. Although the U.N. Security Council demanded a 30-day ceasefire go into effect Feb. 24, fighting has continued, and efforts to get humanitarian aid into areas where citizens are trapped were recently halted due to fear of chemical attacks.
Cardinal Zenari said that of all the world disasters he's witnessed, "I have never seen so much violence as in Syria," and likened the situation to the 1994 Rwandan genocide.
At times, Zenari said he asks himself, "Does the Lord not see this?" However, he said he is consoled when he thinks of the Jesus' own suffering and death, because "Jesus in his passion sweat blood, from his whole body...(the) blood of the entire Church, the blood of the martyrs."
"We are in the eighth year of the Passion" in Syria, he said.
He lamented the fact that no agreements have yet been reached to put an end to the violence, saying that so far the discussions either fail to yield a deal, or a deal is made but falls apart.
The cardinal also pointed to the millions who have fled Syria and are now living in other countries, including a high number of youth. Because of this, he said, Syria is rapidly becoming "a society without youth, a Church without youth."
He closed his hour-long address with an appeal for prayer, asking attendees to pray for "our dear friends, brothers and sisters in Syria."