Al-Rahi Heads to Turkey, Says People are Fed up with Divisions

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Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi said on Wednesday that “people are fed up with divisions” and reiterated support for Lebanese from all sects and parties.

“People are fed up with divisions and we are always with all Lebanese from all sects, moods, movements and parties,” al-Rahi said at Rafik Hariri International Airport ahead of travelling to Turkey on a pastoral trip.

Bkirki “respects everyone and we want the best for all,” he was quoted as saying by the state-run National News Agency.

Asked whether the recent visit of a March 14 opposition delegation to the seat of the Maronite church was an ice-breaker, al-Rahi said: “We didn’t put any ice in anyone’s path.”

“The meeting was good and sometimes misunderstandings do take place,” he added.

The delegation announced last Friday that the misunderstanding between some March 14 Christian officials and al-Rahi has ended and talks between the two sides will continue.

Relations between al-Rahi and the opposition’s Christians deteriorated after the patriarch made several controversial statements on the Syrian revolution and Hizbullah’s arms.

Comments 11
Thumb lebneneh 27 June 2012, 12:09

Well said Mr. Partiarch but unfortunately you are part of the problem. You are a religious man interfering in politics (like all other religious). Historically never worked and will never ever work!

Thumb lebneneh 27 June 2012, 12:35

People are not enjoying it but people are brainwashed my friend...There is so much pressure in Lebanon on the normal Lebanese to take sides in a viscous way and to relinquish critical evaluation of the political arena. 95% percent of politicians are sect or religion specific so their is the religious pressure to support the politician that they share their religion. 99% of media outlets are owned or funded by these politicians or their parties so the average Lebanese sees nothing else but divisions with no other options. The never ending "existential" struggle with Israel is so very often used to serve agendas. The affiliation of each group of Lebanese with an external country which is in a virtual war with other countries....unfortunately the Lebanese people are brainwashed and brainwashed people don't know that they are brainwashed!

Thumb thepatriot 27 June 2012, 12:36

You should have thought about that before you made statements on Hizbullah’s arms, the situation in Syria, and your support to Bashar!

Default-user-icon +oua nabka + (Guest) 27 June 2012, 13:59

can the turks give back the churches and the land that belongs to the christian back

Thumb beiruti 27 June 2012, 15:24

It is very unfortunate for Lebanon at this time of division, that Beshara Rai is serving as the Maronite Patriarch. The Patriarch must be a very, very wise man because he has two hats which can never be confused. He is the spiritual leader of the Maronites, a rite of the Catholic church and as such he speaks only to the Maronites.
But in Lebanon, the Patriarch has a second role which is not exclusive to the Maronites or a faction of the Maronites, but it is to the nation. The Maronite Patriarch has been respected as the voice of all Lebanon spoken to the world. So when the Maronite Patriarch speaks of matters Lebanon, all listen.
Rai has confused the two roles. He speaks as the spiritual leader of the Maronites and, when speaking of Lebanon, his voice has been only one of many voices speaking for a political faction of Maronites. As such, the unifying capability of Bkerke is lost with Rai. Sfeir maintained it and Rai lost it.

Thumb beiruti 27 June 2012, 15:30

He has put the Maronite Patriarchy which used to over arch all politics in Lebanon, into a little box such that the Maronite Patriarch is now on par all of the with other minons of clerics in Lebanon who dabble in politics.
I find it continually amazing that the Maronites, who have the greatest interest in building and maintaining a strong pluralist state, one that is friendly for Christians to live and work and thrive in Lebanon, bring forth leaders who are anathema to bringing about this result. Aoun is a prime example with his arrogance and relentless pursuit of personal power that knows no red lines. Rai is another who, though well intentioned, has over reached and thus will under achieve in a position of leadership.

Thumb sophia_angle 27 June 2012, 15:53

Your high level wisdom will save us! God be with you & GMA !!!

Missing allouchi 27 June 2012, 21:54

sophia, you make me laugh so much....:)

Thumb beiruti 27 June 2012, 18:51

@rudes. I have no mufti pal. I am a practicing Maronite. We Maronites are open minded people and when our spiritual leaders do not do well in temporal matters, we hold them accountable and they expect us to hold them accountable. If you would do the same with your clerics in whatever brand of Islam that you practice, then maybe one day you will be able to join the rest of us in the modern world.

Missing allouchi 27 June 2012, 19:05

beiruti, good point

Default-user-icon rackyj has (Guest) 27 June 2012, 20:29

i hope ashraf al nass are not going to make patriarch raii drag his luggage to the airport on foot.