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February 2019
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Middle East Peace Programs

American Religious Leaders Spread Peace Message in Lebanon

A delegation of twenty-two Ambassadors for Peace visited Lebanon after the summer 2006 war to bring a message of peace. In groups of two or three, they conducted several events together, building bonds among local and international Ambassadors for Peace. The delegation included two Christian bishops and seven pastors as well as three imams.

Sheik Masri and his wife Mrs. Fadwa Masri, both Ambassadors for Peace, spent several days organizing the event.

One exciting aspect was the great variety of venues and groups visited. Religious groups visited included Druze, Sunni and Shia Muslims, as well as Armenian Catholic, Maronite, and Orthodox Christians.

Venues included homes, schools, churches, mosques, orphanages, city halls, the parliament, monasteries, and universities, as well as the offices of Amnesty International,  and UPI. Thirty-six such visits took place.

The group went to the Imam Sadr Foundation, a Shia Muslim charitable foundation that runs an orphanage for 1150 orphans, eight hospitals in southern Lebanon, and two mobile clinics.

Discussions with the foundation’s leaders revealed a deep compassion based on its founding principles that “before we are anything else we are all human” and “our dignity comes from God.”

They heard stories about families reaching out to others beyond ethnic boundaries.One family talked about the civil war and how their father had taken in another family whose colleagues had fired on his own family just two years earlier.

One Ambassador for Peace commented: “The real success was when we visited the families…If you truly want to know about Lebanon, go and visit the families.”

 

 

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