“The so-called ‘Arab Spring’ sweeping the Middle East holds much promise, yet we must remain vigilant. The Church abhors the use of violence to meet any goal. Violence can never be justified. We want to see a Middle East renewed in its respect of human rights and dignity, especially for her minorities. We want to see people electing democratic governments and holding them accountable. It is important to point out the role the Christians played in upholding democratic principles, freedoms and human rights in the Middle East. This is why a Christian presence there should be safeguarded and the role of Christians strengthened.”
— Maronite Patriarch, His Beatitude Bechara Peter Rai
He spoke at a press conference at CNEWA this morning, as part of his first pastoral visit to the U.S. since his election last March.
Read more about him and see video at this link. (If you watch the video, that fellow taking notes on the right may look familiar…)