Loading
Maronite cardinal concerned about Christian exodus
Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Addthis

.- Cardinal Nasrallah Sfeir, patriarch of the Maronite Church, is very concerned about the “progressive devastation” in Lebanon and “the growing outward migration of Christians, who are not returning.”

“We held out in the Arab world for 2,000 years, but now things are going downhill at a rapid pace,” he told Spiegel Online. “The current crisis is dramatically amplifying this tendency.”

He speculated that if Hezbollah should ever take power in Lebanon, “Christians will leave the country in droves.”

The cardinal said it was unfortunate that some Christians “make arrangements with Hezbollah - if only for tactical reasons.” His statement was in response to an observation made by Spiegel that Christian General Michel Aoun, who could possibly be Lebanon's next president, has forged an alliance with Hezbollah.

The cardinal expressed his support for Prime Minister Siniora's peace plan, which calls for the disarmament of all Shiite militias.

“As soon as a cease-fire with Israel takes effect, as soon as the two sides exchange prisoners and the Shebaa Farms are returned to Lebanon, Hezbollah will no longer have the right to maintain an army,” he said. “Hezbollah has become a state within a state, with help from Iran. That's not something we can continue to accept after the war.”

The cardinal said Lebanon wants “orderly relations” with Syria. “We refuse to tolerate proxy wars on Lebanese territory. … That means Damascus must accept the demarcation of the Syrian-Lebanese border and release our prisoners.”

The cardinal warned that Lebanon’s greatest threat currently is Iran, which continues to ship weapons into the country.

A native of the Palestinian territories, the cardinal also told Spiegel that Lebanon wishes for the Palestinians “to have their own state on their home territory, just like we Lebanese have our own state. … But the struggle for Palestine cannot be fought from Lebanon, the smallest and weakest state in the Arab world.”

The cardinal said he only expects peace with Israel once “all other Arab states have signed a peace treaty with Israel, too.”

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
Christ Cathedral CNA video Sept 2014
Alejandro Bermudez of CNA accepts ice bucket challenge
'The Real Albania,' remembering those who fled
Pope Francis in Albania, "one of the most important visits of the post-communist era in Albania"
Pope Francis greets paralyzed man who risked all to see him
Franciscans on the banks of the Tiber in Rome, working for the New Evangelization
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea
The tombs of the early Christians
Missionaries of Africa, called "the White Fathers"
Italian youth give testimony after mission to Peru
Interview with Iraqi Ambassador to the Holy See on the persecution of Christians
New book 'The Vatican unknown'
Oct
23

Liturgical Calendar

October 23, 2014

Thursday of the Twenty-Ninth Week in Ordinary Time

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Lk 12:49-53

Gospel
Date
10/23/14
10/22/14
10/21/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Eph 3:14-21
Gospel:: Lk 12: 49-53

Saint of the Day

St. Romuald »

Saint
Date
10/23/14

Homily of the Day

Lk 12:49-53

Homily
Date
10/23/14
10/22/14
10/21/14