Presidential vacuum: Syriac Maronite Patriarch Mor Bechara Boutros Raï reiterates call to MPs to fulfill their duty to the Lebanese people

BETH KERKÉ (BKERKI), Lebanon – Syriac Maronite Patriarch and Cardinal in the Catholic Church, Mar Béchara Boutros al-Raï, denounced in his Sunday sermon the continued failure of elected officials in Lebanon to choose a new president for the Republic of Lebanon. Without a new president, the legislature remains paralyzed, the government nominally legal, and required reforms fail to materialize, he stated.

Lebanon has been without a president since late October 2022, when the term of the Syriac Maronite President Michel Aoun ended.

In his Sunday’s sermon, the patriarch called on the elected officials, influential and powerful figures, and the obstructionists to “stand up, …., before the court of God, before conscience, and before the people and history, and know that every appeal that comes to you from the Arab and international community is not just a wish, but rather it is a condemnation of your corruption and misuse of your authority and influence.”

Patriarch al-Raï stressed that with the election of a suitable and better president, the work of state institutions will be activated and organized, misuse of the Treasury trade will stop, and barter with the wealth of the state and the people will cease.

The Patriarch called on the country’s Christian political powers to share with him the responsibility frankly and clearly, stating that; “if the president is a Syriac Maronite, his voters are not all Christians. And if part of the responsibility lies on the Christian leaders, the big responsibility lies also on the others.” .

For his part, the Rûm Orthodox Metropolitan of Beirut Elias Audeh, stressed in his Sunday sermon that the construction of the state begins with the election of a president and the formation of a government that works zealously to activate state administrations according to a comprehensive plan of rescue and reform, saying: “If they are not able to do it, they should leave it to those who can.”