Beirut with its numerous places of worship of all faiths, is the epitome of tolerance and mutual respect in a multi-community life dominated by a spirit of freedom. Thus the five major churches (to name a few), built in the heart of the capital, belonging to different Christian communities, demonstrate with clarity and eloquence of this fraternal spirit that animates the spiritual life of everyone in Lebanon.
In 1849, Monsignor Agabios Riachy, Metropolitan of Beirut, finished the building of the Saint Elias Cathedral. Once completed, this building was noted for the harmony of its Byzantine architecture and its beautiful oriental decorations. The arches, introduced at that time, gave him the slenderness. His heavenly oculi made her shine all its glory. Its interior decoration and ornamentation made her sumptuous. Become the center of interest of the faithful, it revived their hopes, consolidating their identity and gave breath to flourish.
In 1934, the Cathedral was threatened with demolition to allow the passage of a boulevard connecting the Arch of Triumph to the Place of Martyrs. Expropriation never went to completion.
The Cathedral was recovered by the Eparchy in 1994 after being damaged by the impact of Lebanese strife. Currently, she is close to resume its ancient beauty, its mystery, its spiritual services, its fraternal ecumenical presence and contribution to the rebirth of Lebanon. His son believed in its mission, as well as its future and is determined to restore it, because it is the symbol of their distinctive presence in the heart of the capital.
Work began at the end of 2003 and was completed in May 2006.
Built in a decade, from 1884 to 1894 according to the plans of the Italian architect Giuseppe Maggiore, the Metropolitan Cathedral is a replica of the Basilica of St. Mary Major in Rome, mainly in its facade, its architectural design form Cross and coffered ceiling. It was consecrated by Bishop Youssef Debs in 1894 and restored for the first time in 1953 with significant changes (cut transept and side arcades added). She hosted the deeds of our national life before knowing the turmoil years sombres1975-1990.En 1997 at the request of Bishop Boulos Matar Maronite Archbishop of Beirut, and in strict compliance with the Renaissance style of the period, Cathedral returns to its original shape cross: transept restored in its entirety with recovery windows. The central nave has a coffered ceiling in gilt double frame, wood, coated with gold on beige background. The walls are decorated with a coating of stucco and marble. As the altar is surmounted by a canopy period style with twisted columns. Behind the altar at the back of the choir, is installed'''' cathedra, the chair of the Pope used during his visit to Lebanon. Consecrated after restoration by Cardinal Sfeir 24 April 2000 to 17 hours in the presence of the Patriarchs of the East and the papal legate Cardinal Lustiger, archbishop of Paris. Now renovated, it will remain at the heart of the city the seat of the Archbishop of Beirut.
Built in 1767 on the ruins and structures of the Church of the Resurrection (first century) and nearby school Roman law, it is considered the most beautiful - if not the oldest - the cathedrals and churches of Beirut. The current building dates back to the 17th century (according to an Ottoman document found in the cathedral dating from 1808 h.) When this building was the only church in the city. It was known as the "Convent of St. George" since it regrouped different ecclesiastical centers: the seat of the Metropolitan of Beirut, the seat of the monks, the center of the Advisory Council (Al Melli), a school, a library, hospitals and printing (first printing Arabic in Beirut). In 1715, at the time of the late Metropolitan Neophitos, the church was enlarged and renovated at random. In 1759, it was damaged by an earthquake, which led to a fundraiser to enlarge and restore. The work lasted three years de1764 to 1767: in this year, the roof of the church collapsed on the believers who celebrated Mass and 90 men lost their lives. A new restoration of the church was begun in 1772 in the time of the late Metropolitan Yoakim, including three altars: the altar of St. George in the center, the altar of St. Nicolas on the right and left altar of St. Elijah. In 1783, the church was embellished by a wooden iconostasis of nuts and decorated with gilt icons mostly dating from the 18th century. The church once again experienced in 1904 an extension of the time of the late Metropolitan Gerasimos Mesarra: its walls and roof were decorated with frescoes, and the place was surrounded by a wall.
The 1975-1990 war did not spare the cathedral most of its icons and its furnishings were looted, and the iconostasis and frescoes even suffered terribly because of climatic effects because its roof was shaken. On 16 October 1995, the Metropolitan Archbishop of Beirut Elias Aoude decided to restore the cathedral. The work was done, the debris removed and the roof étançonné. Studies on the state of the building were started and archaeological excavations revealed the remains of three superposed churches the oldest is probably the Church of the Resurrection destroyed by the earthquake that shook violently 551 Beirut. On top of this church are the remains of a church dating from the Middle Ages to overcome those of another 18th century church as well as the excavations uncovered the remains of a cemetery, mosaics and many utensils of church. The excavations will be transformed into an underground museum, and restoration work has been divided between:
1 - the iconostasis: several parts were found and restored and refurbished parts were looted and attached to the old.
2 - The floor was restored and paved with mosaics, including a copy of the mosaic found under the cathedral.
3 - The frescoes were refurbished by a group of Russian artists who restored what was almost intact. He removed the damaged parts and too stuck on paintings that are on display in the living room of the church. A group of Greek artists worked to paint the remaining frescoes.
This church was when it was built in 1860, the first Catholic church in Lebanon for Armenians. It was destroyed in 1901 in order to expand so that it can accommodate a large number of devotees. In 1950 it suffered the same fate of destruction to build its location the Cathedral of St. Elian and Gregory Cardinale Agajajian time.
Built in 1864, near the Grand Serail, newly restored bell tower stands in the middle with sting buildings downtown also given to new. Large church with colorful roses, it meets the needs of the community of the Latin rite.
Built in 1867, three years after those of the Capuchins, is the work of Anglo-American missionaries and meets the needs of the Protestant community. In Gothic and Oriental architecture with its roof of red brick, the church was completely destroyed in 1976 and rebuilt with the same stone in 1998.
A Roman-style church built in 1875. It is known for its arcades, apses and cut stones. The arches resemble prostyls temples with their marble columns that give it illuminating splendor. Its beauty is reflected even by its stained glass windows depicting saints and white marble altar surmounted by a painting of Saint Maron and painted by El Daoud Corm (Saint Maron is celebrated on February 9, official holiday in Lebanon).
The current church building dates back to 1907 and reflects more of an architectural style where the Italian architect had amalgamated yellow stones (used in the majority of Beirut buildings) the great Roman carved columns. The church was restored in 2002 and the windows were covered with colorful windows of the French artist Jacques Guiton who added a touch of modernity (renewed) in the old building.
It is located between the street "Al Makhoul" and "Bliss" (opposite the American University). Built in 1860 by the faithful of the Orthodox rite time Erosios fire, the church has a five-storey school where 1,300 students of all religions and rites pursue their academic studies. Within the walls of the church are the same cemeteries dating from the time of the construction of the church.
It dates from the early 19th century. It was first located in the center of the old Beirut (southeast of St. George's Church of the Maronites to the Turkish Hammam). At the beginning of the second decade of the 20th century, the government expropriated the land and demolished the church to expand the road Maarad.
The present church was officially opened in 1927 and is one of the largest Orthodox churches of old Beirut. The entrance is marked by a large ornate iron gate topped by a stone parapet also decorated and surrounded to the west by two cupolas shaped rosettes containing four bells. One of the bells from the old church she was brought from Russia and bears the following inscription in Russian: "Russia in the casting workshop Semghine Dimitri." This inscription is next to an icon of the Virgin Mary holding the infant Jesus in her arms. The bell weighs about 160 kg and was made in 1826. The iconostasis is delicately carved white marble and decorated with drawings and works in colored marble and seashells, thus constituting a true artistic masterpiece. Crowned by an icon of Christ, the bishop's throne (to the right of the church) stands on two lions kneeling Carrera marble. This church is one of the few churches that still retain an ancient marble baptismal font decorated with carvings made by hand. It contains Russian icons of beauty and perfection exquisite 19th century and mounted on existing iconostasis. There are also old robes worn by priests, utensils, embroidery, a tabernacle dating from the second half of the 19th century, icons painted by the pioneering artist Habib Srour and a rare icon (probably dating back to the 19th century) painted on a special fabric and includes a series of adjacent icons describing the saving work of God from the Creation to the Second Coming and the Last Judgment.
In 1880, mother Mariam (Labibé) Gehchan founded an orphanage, a school and a monastic order under the supervision of the "Zahrat Al-Ihsan 'Association and under the patronage of St. Catherine venerable martyr and full of wisdom. The St. Catherine's Church with its magnificent iconostasis (hand painted by Ibrahim Abdo Jabbour) was consecrated in 1950. The church contains a large icon of the Virgin Mary ("Our Lady of Vladimir") painted by a Russian and ancient Russian icon artist and other ancient and modern icons that adorn the walls.
It dates from 1976 and gave his name to his entourage: Rue Saint Nicolas, Saint Nicolas district whose inhabitants have adopted as their patron saint. The church was destroyed during the war. On 14 April 1991, the Metropolitan of Beirut and its surroundings Archbishop Elias Aoude placed the foundation stone of the new building in the new complex Saint Nicolas which included two churches: one on the ground floor is a replica of the old church while the other is larger and characterized by a marble iconostasis and beautiful Byzantine icons.
Oriental architectural style, it was built in the 19th century and dedicated to Saint Dimitri (where the region was well known by Mar Mitr). The adjoining cemetery is one of the oldest in the capital: it consists of few that Orthodox Beirut as appropriate final resting artistic pieces.
The monastery dates from before the nineteenth century, and its buildings currently include the Saint Elie Btina school, high school Greek Orthodox. The monastery church was a sanctuary in a cave where small openings were installed in the roof for ventilation. The altars of the present church are placed in cavities cut into the rock. This sanctuary was enlarged into a church which currently holds the cut in the rock section. A wooden iconostasis rises and is decorated with ancient Russian icons. The church also contains an old miraculous icon of Saint Elie venerated by the faithful.
It is the seat of the Metropolitan of Beirut and its surroundings and the seat of the Bishopric of Beirut (created by Quartz, one of the 72 disciples of Christ in the first century AD). The seat was previously located in St. George's Cathedral (Place de l'Etoile), but the bishop Erothaos built in 1860 the lower west wing of the existing building (Achrafieh - Street of the diocese or the Sursock Street, the one of the most beautiful streets of the capital with its ancient castles and beautiful green gardens). Metropolitan Elias Aoude built in one of the gardens of the palace a church dedicated to St. Anthony the Great and the Visionary Porphyrios.
It was built in the early 20th century by Catherine Karkabi in an orchard of olive and fig trees, away from the noise, movement and houses. The church is distinguished by its wooden iconostasis carved by hand (1906) and its silver-coated icons (dating from the same period).
This is the first church in Lebanon to which the Holy See granted the status of basilica. Dedicated November 27, 1952 at Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal in the presence of the Apostolic Nuncio, it was built by the Vincentian Fathers on a hill overlooking Beirut Achrafieh. Since its construction, the church has found a calling to serve, which has become a center of piety, reconciliation and spiritual influence in Beirut and all of Lebanon. A "Memorandum of spiritual brotherhood" was signed between it and the Basilica of Our Lady of Lourdes in France on 19 November 2005, first making it an oasis of prayer, meditation and peace in the heart of the capital.