st. sharbel

Blending of cultures, veneration of Maronite saint's relics lead to ‘unique experience’

Lisa Johnston | | twitter: @aeternusphoto
Roxana Azurdia and her grandaughter, Krysta Flores, prayed at the reliquary of St. Sharbel Makhluf, an ascetic monk of St. Maron who was born in Labanon in 1828. St. Sharbel’s relics were at St. Raymond Maronite Cathedral, and events included a Mass celebrated in Spanish, Aramaic, Latin and English.

With the veneration of the relics of St. Sharbel at St. Raymond's Cathedral in St. Louis Oct. 31 to Nov. 4 came an opportunity to involve the Hispanic community in a Spanish Maronite Mass there Nov. 1.

Maronite Catholics belong to one of the 22 Catholic Churches that are in union with each other and in full communion with the pope in Rome. The spiritual heritage of the Maronite Church is traced to a fourth-century hermit, St. Maron. St. Raymond's architecture, liturgy and devotions are all part of the Lebanese Christian culture.

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