Maronite Patriarch Bechara Al-Rahi on Friday officiated the customary mass celebrating Saint Maroun's Day in Gemmayzeh, in the presence of President Michel Aoun, Speaker Nabih Berri as well as high-ranking officials.
PM Saad Hariri couldn't attend the service because he is out of the country.
In his sermon, the Patriarch stressed the need for politicians to make sacrifices so as to build a strong and productive state, deeming this as a key pre-requirement for the rise of the country everyone aspires to.
"These sacrifices would be enough to help the country face challenges,” Al-Rahi said.
“The first of these challenges is strengthening coexistence which makes Lebanon an exemplary model," he stressed, calling on officials to manage the country's affairs while respecting the characterstics and differences of each other.
“The second challenge lies in building a modern and democratic state that safeguards coexistence and preserves balance between citizenship for individuals and pluralism for groups,” Al-Rahi concluded.