Maronite priest in Lebanon says “The number of Christians in the country is decreasing day by day”
In an interview with ACN, Father Jad Chlouk, the parish priest of the Maronite Catholic Cathedral in Beirut, said that the balance between the different religions has shifted and has become increasingly unstable since more and more Christians have left Lebanon.
Tobias Lehner, the journalist of ACN, asked the parish priest what has changed since the explosion that took place four months ago, and how has the Covid-19 pandemic affected the reconstruction and humanitarian work in the affected areas of Beirut.
Father Chlouk said, the “mood is still distressed and anxious, but despite everything, we are preparing ourselves as much as possible to live the coming feast and renew our spiritual life.”
He also talked about the works of reconstruction. He said, “the rehabilitation of the Maronite Cathedral started a month ago. (…) We expect to finish fixing the roof in a couple of weeks, while as for the other openings, the fixing of the damaged windows and doors, this work is still in progress.” However, the Covid-19 pandemic has delayed the cathedral restoration, especially during the two weeks of the lockdown period.
The priest also highlighted the problem that many Christians are trying to leave the country since the explosion. According to the statistics, “more than 380,000 requests for immigration were presented to the embassies of the EU and the countries of North America, and that most of them were from Christians, who unfortunately now feel like strangers in their own home country.”
You can read the full interview here.