Friday, February 24, 2017


Our first day in Lebanon took us to the Beqaa Valley in northern Lebanon where our Catholic Relief Service [CRS] guides, Davide Bernocchi and Sean Kenney,  Brought us to witness some of the activities of CRS and Caritas Lebanon to assist refugees who have fled the endless conflicts in Syria and have cross over the mountains into Lebanon.

This young man sang an Arabic song.
Children in classrooms are classic.
Journeying with me is Archbishop Silvano Tomasi who is a special Secretary in the new Dicastery for  Promoting Integral Human Development.

After school snack time!
First stop:  a unique school operated by the Good Shepherd Sisters.  The Sisters have a small school in which they take Syrian refugee children and help them with a variety of services, including hygiene practises, basic education, and various programs to assist them with their precarious living situation.  Some photos of these children are shown here:
Children love to have their pictures taken!

Childish antics are universal!

Our next stop was to visit a nearby camp where many refugee families have lived for some four years, ever since the armed conflict in Syrian began.  The people live in small tent-like structures, many family members per tent. Most long to return to their homes in Syria when the terrible war in Syria ends.  We met refugees from Aleppo, Homs, and other cities and towns spread across the country.

CRS and Caritas Lebanon offer many services to assist the families and children.  Sadly, families from rural Syria do not value education since their lives are centered on farming and each family member is needed to help with all the farm jobs.
Syrian Refugee family

Some photos from this camp:

Children enjoying play time

Isaac, age 21, opens a store in the camp demonstrating again human ingenuity!

Continue to pray for all refugees and people forced from their homes by war, conflict, hunger, and persecution.  Only Jesus, the Prince of Peace, can bring an end to so much displacement and suffering.

[For more information on the work of CRS, visit: ]