Lebanon prepares for the Pope | Custodia Terrae Sanctae

Lebanon prepares for the Pope


Lebanon is preparing to welcome the Pope. The official program of the Holy Father’s visit was announced only a short time ago: he is arriving on 14th September and will be in the country for three days. 
A few days before the official announcement on the movements and engagements of Benedict XVI in Lebanon, a press conference was held at the headquarters of the Catholic Information Center in Beirut, in order to present the trip and its preparations to the media. 
Together with the Apostolic Nuncio, Msgr. Caccia, and the Archbishop of Beirut Msgr. Matar, the representatives of committee for the preparation of the papal visit described the efforts exerted over many months to ensure a good outcome to this greatly anticipated event:

Committee for the Preparation of the Papal Visit

Lebanon is almost ready to welcome His Holiness' Pope Benedict XVI. The preparations began in March. We have had many meetings with the Vatican Authorities, under the supervision of Msgr Gabriele Caccia, the Papal Nuncio, and with representatives of the Presidential Palace in Lebanon and also with a professional committee of the Lebanese Catholic Church… 

For the logistical preparation in the field, and on paper, thirteen separate issues needed to be worked on.

Committee for the Preparation of the Papal Visit
First of all, the preparation of the liturgical celebrations according to all the logistical and technical details; then the security aspect, then the financial costs of the visit, which we will have to face together with the Lebanese Government, who have decided to finance a part of the visit, with the Church making up the rest ... and many donors are ready to offer their help to ensure the visit has a high profile ...

This work has also closely involved the Lebanese Media - TV, press, and Radio - to prepare them to follow the event in the best possible way. Much information and background will also be available on the official website of the event: www.lbpapalvisit.org .

Director of the Catholic Information Center

We are preparing this hall for the 66 journalists arriving together with the Holy Father and for the others from Lebanon and other countries. The hall, the means of transport ... The Church Committee meets every week ... It’s a great occasion for us to welcome the Pope, it’s a sign of peace. We hope that he brings “the peace of Jesus” with him, for Lebanon and for the entire Middle East. We hope he brings us hope, and the strength to endure here, as Christians, in Lebanon and in the Middle East.
Also in the words of the Archbishop of Beirut, there is the conviction that this visit will be, in effect, a message addressed from Lebanon to the entire Middle East: In the press conference, he said: "We all await the Pope and his message about the past, present and future of our country and of the entire Middle East”.