• Catholique

The Maronite Church


In the 5th century, the Maronites were loyal to Chalcedonian faith.

In the 6th century, they rejected monophysite heresy. With the Muslim invasion in the 7th century, they took refuge in the Lebanese mountains.

Their exodus lasted from the 7th to the 10th century. With the arrival of the Crusaders in 1099, they re-established their relations with the West and with Rome. Forbidden under the domination of the Mamelukes (1291-1516), these relations were restored in the middle of the 15th century and intensified under the Ottoman Empire thanks to the support of the kings of France.

In 1736, the first regional Maronite synod lays the foundations for the reorganisation of the Maronite Church. In 1920, the Maronites — the soul of Lebanon — as well as other Christian and Muslim communities, demand the proclamation of the state of Greater Lebanon through the voice of the Maronite patriarch.

The Maronite Church, whose seat is in Bkerké (Lebanon), has approximately 800,000 faithful in Lebanon, and a much greater diaspora: approximately 4 million people around the world, including 80,000 in France.

In March 2011, its new patriarch – H.B. Cardinal Bechara Boutros al-Rahi – was appointed.