Following are summaries of some of the main stories in a selection of Lebanese newspapers Monday. The Daily Star cannot vouch for the accuracy of these reports.
Pope to Lebanese: Reject division and chose pluralism
Minister Adnan Mansour calls for emergency meeting of Arab League
“I pray to God for Lebanon, that she may live in peace and courageously resist all that could destroy or undermine that peace. I hope that Lebanon will continue to permit the plurality of religious traditions and not listen to the voices of those who wish to prevent it. I hope that Lebanon will fortify the communion among all her inhabitants, whatever their community or religion, that she will resolutely reject all that could lead to disunity, and with determination choose brotherhood.”
“May Lebanon continue to be a place where men and women can live in harmony and peace with each other, in order to give the world not only a witness to the presence of God, the primary theme of this past Synod, but also a witness to the communion between people, the second theme of the Synod, whatever their political, social, or religious standpoint.”
With these words Pope Benedict XVI bid farewell at the airport Sunday, ending his official three-day papal visit during which he met with political and spiritual officials from the various sects and religions and during which he signed the Post-Synodal for the Middle East document and stressed the need to preserve this “renowned Lebanese balance as a model to the residents of the region and the world.”
The peace enjoyed by Lebanon throughout the pope’s three-day visit seems to have ended after Hezbollah chief Sayyed Hasan Nassrallah appeared [on television] to call for a series of protests to commence Monday in the southern suburb of Beirut that will then proceed to Bint Jbeil, the Hermel and other cities in protest of the film that insults the Prophet. He also called on the Arab League to move on the issue and to take a decision. He also called on Muslim in the United States to take a similar decision.
Half an hour after the speech, Foreign Affairs Minister Adnan Mansour’s office announced that Mansour, in his capacity as head of the Arab League Foreign Affairs Council, had contacted the head of the Arab organization and requesting that the latter make the necessary calls to hold an emergency session to look into the issue of the film that insults the Prophet.
Christian concerns coalesce in a Mass participated by hundreds of thousands
Pope “urges” the Lebanese” Avoid strife and boost partnership
Pope Benedict XVI returned to the Vatican but a lot of him still remains in Lebanon and the region: The echo of his words, the shadow of his raised hand giving his blessing to his numerous “followers,” linger. The pope has returned to his “world.” For sure, most Lebanese would have hoped the pontiff would prolong his stay.
It is true that the era of miracles has passed and [during his visit] the pope did not wave a magic wand and bring about miracles.
But it is also true that he was able to, with his magical mix of simplicity, bring together, even if temporarily, those who had been apart for a long period of time. He was able to calm spirits anxious over their present and future and introduced an inner tranquility that had been missing for a long time.
Pope in his farewell: Prayers to Lebanon that it may live in peace
After three days in which faith in Lebanon and its role as a message in the era of the Arab Spring was consecrated as Pope Benedict XVI stressed during his historical visit to the region which is witnessing historical changes, the pontiff ended his trip and bid farewell saying: “I pray that Lebanon may live in peace and courageously resist all that could destroy or undermine that peace.”
After he bid farewell there was Lebanese consensus at the social and political levels that the pontiff’s trip was historical by all standards.
It was historical in terms of the caliber of the visitor: a pilgrim of peace who stressed that “serving for justice and peace, in a world where violence does not cease ..., is necessary to achieve a fraternal society and for the building of partnership.”
It was historical in terms of the hosting country: a country of coexistence surrounded by dangers ...
It was historical in terms of the pope, who served as a stepping stone to ensure it remains a message and praised Muslims before the Christians
It was historical in terms of its reception both at the social and political levels ...