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Lebanon Prayer: Jocelyne Khoueiry

God, May she rest in peace. May her nation simply rest. Compelled by civil war, the young woman took up arms to defend her people. She later laid them down, as religion moved from identity to faith. God, does Lebanon need the same? Can faith demand arms? Is identity for sect or nation? Which do […]

Lebanon Prayer: Rising Tensions

God, Lebanon feels on the precipice. Perhaps it has already fallen. Is there a cushion? What impact awaits? And who will be there to pick up the pieces? The Maronite patriarch continued his call for neutrality. The president shelved it for other priorities, while a Shiite sheikh said resistance is necessary. The French welcomed his […]

Hagia Sophia’s Muslim Prayers Evoke Ottoman Treatment of Armenians

Declared a mosque in principle, Hagia Sophia is now a mosque in practice. Following his decree earlier this month, Turkish President Recep Erdoğan’s joined a coronavirus-limited 500 worshipers to perform Friday prayers in the sixth-century Byzantine basilica, underneath the covered frescoes of Jesus and the Virgin Mary. Hundreds more gathered outside. International condemnation resounded after […]

Lebanon Prayer: Patriarch’s Plea

God, Lebanon is a small state. Yet it is full of many peoples. Sects—to be fair. They are one people. Or are they? Since its inception Lebanon has struggled to craft an identity. Is it European? Is it Arab? Is it Syrian? Is it Phoenician?   Is it free? So to be free they struck […]

Sudan Drops Death Penalty for Apostasy, Alcohol Ban for Christians

In one of a wide-ranging series of legislative reforms, apostates from Islam no longer face the death penalty in Sudan. “We [will] drop all the laws violating the human rights in Sudan,” Justice Minister Nasredeen Abdulbari said Sunday during an interview on state television. “We are keen to demolish any kind of discrimination that was […]

Lebanon Prayer: Agricultural Jihad

God, In times of crisis, luxury gives way to need. Give the Lebanese their daily bread. But how? The nation has long eaten its imports – up to 85 percent of all consumption. Even considered staples come from abroad. May Lebanon thank you for years of plenty. And now? May Lebanon seek you in times […]

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