Al-Rahi: It's My Duty to Welcome Pope in Jerusalem and I Ask Those against My Visit Not to Come to Bkirkiإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi announced on Tuesday that it is his duty to welcome Pope Francis in Jerusalem, asking those against his visit "not to come to Bkirki."
"I am the Maronite Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, of regions expanding from Turkey to Mauritania, Saudi Arabia and to Iran,” al-Rahi stated upon his arrival at Rafik Hariri International Airport coming from France.
"It is my duty to welcome the Pope in any country in these regions,” he said.
The head of the Maronite Church elaborated: “Jerusalem is our city as Christians before anyone else, and it is an Arab city. I am going there to say this is our city. We have (religious) authority there and we have people who follow our church. I am going home and I am going to see my people. We have been present in Haifa and Galilee long before Israel.”
“I am a Patriarch and I have a duty to visit my people,” he reiterated.
“I ask the Lebanese to respect me and I am not asking anyone to accept my visit.”
“Those bothered by my visit, I ask them not to come to Bkirki. These are my duties and I am going to fulfill them,” he remarked.
Al-Rahi assured reporters that he will not hold talks with any Israeli official.
“I know Lebanon is in enmity with Israel but I have nothing to do with Israel. I am going to see my people and I have said I will not meet with anyone. I have nothing to do with political affairs I deal with church-related matters only.”
“I am going to defend the land along with (Palestinian) President (Mahmoud) Abbas. This is your land and you have the right to defend it,” he said, addressing the Palestinian people.
Al-Rahi is expected to travel to the Holy Land to welcome the pontiff during his brief May 24-26 visit.
He would be the first patriarch to do so since the creation in 1948 of Israel, with which Lebanon is technically at war.
Lebanese citizens are banned from entering Israel, but Maronite clergy may to travel to the Holy Land to minister to the estimated 10,000 faithful there.
While some considered the visit a “historical mistake that opens the door for normalization with Israel,” Church authorities have repeatedly assured that it has a strictly religious character.
The Mufti Rashid Kabbani, should follow the foot steps of Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi,and lead Friday prayers in Al Aqsa...w Kida, ma 7adish, a7san min 7ad.
Thank you Your Eminence, the time has now come to stand firm. And to those who don't like it, tough.
I have only one short sentence on you ya Mama Bani Maarouf, or the character currently posting as Ibinharathrheik, or Ibin Sit Bani Zeinab, or Profile, or Falanges, or Wolf Rear, or Flamer Entayeh, in fact the person who is most happy debasing others in this forum and creating stories about them, things that only reside in your dead brain. Father forgive him, for he knows not what he is doing. I would also add, for he knows not what he is saying, or writing or even where he lives, jumping from the Shouf to Hrajel was not such a good idea. Now do us a favor and remove the avatar of Sfeir for you don't deserve him. Use Jumblat's, he is a lot more suited to you.
100% M11. very true indeed.
Mniha Batrakna! I'm with. Go wherever you want to go ou yallé mesh 3ejbo 3omro ma ye3jbo.
I too am proud for this stand. There are Palestinian Christians who need to see their spiritual leaders and this is the purpose of this mission. Allah Maak, Patriarch!
Never heard of any non-lebanese christian who cares about al-rahi and consider him his or any other lebanese batrak as his spiritual leader. They all have their own priests that they consider their leaders. Nobody is expecting anything from Al-rahi. Not even many lebanese christians.
It is not weird. Hezbollah=Israel and Israel=Hezbollah. Hezbollah entered the war to save Assad only because the Israeli Army couldn't do so. It wouldn't look good for Assad to have his protectors to the south openly fighting for his survival.
The majority of us Lebanese and Palestinians are supporting your visit Sir . It is the right thing to do
Your visit to Jerusalem, Palestine is a supportive visit to the Palestinians and their historic rights. I would like to invite you to make a quick visit to any one of the Palestinian camps in Lebanon , to see how there living , how much they're suffering. We know you are always promoting justice , peace and love for all(the God's way) we are asking for justice and basic human rights for the Palestinian refugees since over 65 years with one dream to return to Haifa, Aka, Jerusalem etc
Thank you Sir and God bless you
correct me if I'm wrong but I thought HA was all about supporting the Palestinians. It seems that they are the only ones allowed to support just like they are the only ones allowed to "resist".
texas, i disagree with u, i've been to alqods visited blessed palestine even if i hate zionists and would die to get rid of their racist regime... Batrak visit could actually give support to forgotten christian palestinians in holy land...
if i have to choose between a zionist regime where we can live in peace having a bright future to our children and an arab regime full of hate where people kill and maim each other on a daily basis .... my choice is done .... i choose the zionist regime .. no brainer !!!!
"Church authorities have repeatedly assured that it has a strictly religious character."
Exactly what part of the meeting with PA President Abbas is religious?
"Jerusalem is our city as Christians before anyone else," and here I was believing all these years that the Jews were there before Christianity, and even Jesus was born a Jew. But why should the facts trouble Al-Rahi's field of thought.
well they said that visits to Israeli controlled territory are of religious character, Abbas doesn't reside in Israeli controlled territory.
"Before" in the text above is just slightly improper translation, a non-literal translation would be "As Christians we do not have less rights to Jerusalem than anyone else" The expression he used does not indicate that Christians were there before Jews.
Then again, I think you knew all that already but still decided to post...
You should have told the Lebanese government that in 1983 when they allowed the Syrian occupiers to tear up the proposed peace treaty between Lebanon and Israel. However, 2014 is not to late.
No one is telling him not to go, but.........where was he or is predecessors when the previous Popes visited Israel?
I personally would prefer to be under Israeli rule, than be under any lebanese or arab rule.
Would it have been more tangabile to the narrow minded and shallow critics had Al-Rahi worded his visit as a a visit to the occupied lands instead of to Israel?
Shame on U Cedar
You are just a small part of the Arab, Wake up, read the history my friend,
Some of you people on this cite, who most likely represent the cross section of the Lebanese communities, have had your freedoms, livelihood, independent thinking and much more hijacked and forced to think in ways that serve your masters' interests and are missing the point. The Israeli/Palestinian conflict should neither be Lebanon's problems, nor anyone of us has the standing to refer to that land as "occupied Palestine" or contemplate who deserves what or more.
If and when the two despicable parties/sides reach a deal, the outcome would determine their faith irrespective what Lebanon or the regional countries say now or have said before. The Lebanese people must stand up, unite and demand the closure of all Palestinian camps and ship them to a country that has money and can better provide them with employment, education, money and future. Whether it is our religious figures, I or the average Lebanese, we all have the right to go to our holly land and/or visit holly cites irrespective of the conflict that us Lebanese do not have a control over or can fix
The Lebanese did sign the treaty but Syria and its stooges in Lebanon forced the Government to renege and abandon it.
So why not ask Israel to renew it now?
phillipo, helicopter - the agreement was signed under duress and it was a humiliating agreement. As to why not? Because most Lebanese are opposed to a treaty with Israel that continues to occupy Palestinian land.
I, and many more admire your stand. Those Christians in Palestine need you and your visit will boost their morale. The hope you are bringing with you is beyond the territorial limits of war. Israel has done its share to make them leave from all the historically Christians town. Your presence will mark an important point for Christians in the Levant and Lebanon in particular. We are proud of your stand.
momo- As Safir newspaper ran a critical piece headlined "Historic sin: Rahi goes to Israel,” in its Saturday issue in response to al-Rahi's controversial visit.
when are you ever going to stop playing the victim? "new account", new logo, same old stale song and dance.
We in Lebanon have been the most stupid and lied to, since ages.
All year round, Iranians, Syrians, Saudi's, Qataris, VISIT Jerusalem with no problem at all. Muslims and Christians go to the pilgrimage in Jerusalem, and all Palestinians in Lebanon go there at least once a year as Pilgrims. Just check any documentary on Jerusalem, like on Discovery channel and replay it to see. Iranians go there usually with a hand made rug, and sell it in Jerusalem to be able to pay the trip. So they say there is great rugs to be bought there.
We all know that Hassan has a personal problem. His son was sent to infiltrate the Israeli border at night with only a rifle in the 90's. The Israelis had night goggles of course, and shot him dead. It was an enormous mistake, and nobody until today, knows who gave the orders for this operation.
So Hassan is holding a whole country hostage to his feelings, and hatred.
Nah, Bani Maarouf, you are not telling the truth. You are a Durzi, astaghfurillah, you are not a Christian, but indeed, you are posing as one. However I see that Roar has pushed one button that has sent you flying off your lid, wow!!! OK, now you can sit and open your drawers and leash out on me your little babies, yalla. All I can say is this: It's not your fault, it's the fault of the forum MODS, who if only will reveal those who are posting using multiple profiles and those who have never but stayed with just one. I know you won't make it. Please, let the mods yi fesholna khel2nah, bass marra we7deh.
thats not true.. HA is against it and voices their displeasure on Al Manar.
not in Lebanon Crush.. in Lebanon every newspaper and tv channel is a mouthpiece for one of the parties...