Pope to Hold Meeting with Lebanon Christian Leaders amidst Crisis


Pope Francis is set to meet with Christian leaders in Lebanon to discuss the crisis in the country. The revered cleric made this statement on Sunday as the country is facing its worst crisis since the civil war which ended in 1990. Also, there are plans by some politicians in the country to decide on a new administration.

According to Pope Francis, on July 1 there will be a meeting to reflect on the challenges in the country. He related this information to pilgrims and tourists in St. Peter's Square present for his weekly blessing.

The three major Christian denominations of Lebanon are Eastern Orthodox, Maronite Catholics, and Melchite Catholics. However, there are other smaller Caholic, Orthodox, and Protestant denominations.

Last year, Beirut suffered a huge chemical explosion which caused the death of 200 people. Besides, it caused damages worth billions of dollars. It also weakened the already damaged economy facing a meltdown.

For months, President Michel Aoun has been having issues with Prime minister-designate Saad al-Hariri because of cabinet positions. In 2019, three-time Prime Minister Hariri resigned after protests were made nationwide against a political elite accused by demonstrators for plunging the nation into crisis. Last October, he got another nomination as prime minister but has not been able to create a new government.

After Hariri’s meeting with the Pope in April at the Vatican, he said that the pontiff informed him that it is only after a government is created that he would visit the country.

Traditionally, both religious and civil leaders can make invitations for a pope’s visit to a nation. The international community has been urged by the pope to assist Lebanon to stand again. He added that the meeting with the Christian leaders in Lebanon would also be an avenue to "pray together for the gift of peace and stability".

The economic meltdown in Lebanon has pushed majority of the population into poverty. This acts as a major threat to the nation’s stability since the 1975-1990 civil war.

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