Lebanese Cardinal Makes 'Historic' Visit to Israel

Ad Feedback

JERUSALEM, Israel -- A Lebanese cardinal became the first religious leader to visit the Jewish state.

Cardinal Bechara Rai, a Maronite Catholic, traveled to Israel Monday on the second and final day of Pope Francis three-day visit to Jordan and Israel.

Rai's critics opposed the visit on the grounds that Israel and Lebanon are formally at war, but the cardinal said he came to strengthen Christian ties to the Holy Land.

"With all the difficulties that you heard about, with all the explanations that are not related to our visit, with all the understandings that have nothing to do with our thoughts, we came here for the goal of strengthening our belief," the cardinal said.

The Lebanese government does not allow its citizens to visit Israel or do business with Israelis, but clergy is exempt from the ban.

Lebanese media labeled Rai's visit to the Jewish state an "historic sin," but Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas embraced him, saying it strengthened the P.A.'s links to the Arab world.

Log in or create an account to post a comment.  

CBN IS HERE FOR YOU!

Are you seeking answers in life? Are you hurting? Are you facing a difficult situation?

Find peace with God, discover more about God or send us your prayer request.

Call The 700 Club Prayer Center at 1 (800) 823-6053, 24 hours a day.

A caring friend will be there to pray with you in your time of need.

CBNNews.com

CBNNews.com

CBN News is a national/international, nonprofit news organization that provides programming by cable, satellite, and the Internet, 24-hours a day. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.