Al-Rahi, Jumblat Agree to Complete the Reconciliation in the Mountains and Close Woundsإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi and Progressive Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblat agreed on Sunday to exert efforts to complete the reconciliation in the Mountains that the former head of the church started in 2001.
“I am committed with you to complete this reconciliation with a spirit of partnership and love,” al-Rahi told Jumblat during a meeting at the Druze chief's mansion in Mukhtara.
“I express my appreciation to your strong effort for the displaced to return to the Mountains,” he said on his second day of visit to the Shouf area.
Jumblat welcomed al-Rahi's effort to consolidate coexistence and said: “We concluded the reconciliation with his predecessor Patriarch Sfeir.”
“The wound of the area of Brih is left to be dealt with. It's essential,” he said.
Coexistence between Muslims and Christians is the essence of the reconciliation and gives it a greater role in protecting the Lebanese entity, the patriarch told the PSP chief in the presence of religious figures.
The Christians seek national unity through a civil state that respects all religions and aspire for freedoms and absolute loyalty to the nation, al-Rahi said.
“We seek through the goodwill of others to reach reconciliation on all Lebanese territories,” he said.
Al-Rahi also stressed that Pope Benedict XVI's apostolic exhortation is an opportunity to show the world the importance of Lebanon as a land of peace and dialogue among civilizations.
Earlier in the day, al-Rahi hoped that the apostolic exhortation would lead to a Christian Spring that in turn would generate a “true Arab Spring.”
“The apostolic exhortation should lead to a Christian and Lebanese Spring so that it incorporates modernized values and diversity to the Arab world through a true Arab Spring,” al-Rahi said in his sermon at St. Anthony's church in the Shouf town of al-Fuwwara.
Several officials attended the mass.
“We urge everyone to welcome the pope and participate in the celebrations” during his three-day visit on Friday, he said.
“The Christians can't forget their identity and that they have a message to spread in Lebanon and the Middle East,” al-Rahi reiterated.
He also called for changing the social status-quo into the better.
Benedict's visit to Lebanon next week is "considered an act of great courage and hope worldwide" as a civil war rages in neighboring Syria, Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi said Saturday.
Lebanon was selected for the Sept. 14-16 trip "before the situation in Syria escalated into an overt and bloody conflict," Lombardi wrote in an editorial for the Vatican weekly Octava Dies.