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(from ONE magazine May 2010)

Ecumenical Societies
Posted: 21 May 2010

“The ecumenical and interreligious climate, especially in Syria,” observed Archbishop Dolan, “was warm and gracious. They long for unity and in many ways have achieved it. And Lebanon is an example of a country where religious cooperation is necessary for survival itself. In the words of Pope John Paull II, ‘Lebanon is not just a nation, but a message.’”

The delegation observed firsthand the region’s religious and sociopolitical complexities, nuances often little understood in the West. For example, in visiting the Great Mosque of Damascus, they venerated the shrine of the head of St. John the Baptist, which occupies a prominent plae in the center of the mosque.

They benefitted as well by briefings from the papal representatives in both countries.