Lebanese Ambassador Initiates Installation of St. Charbel Mosaic at St. Peter’s Basilica

A significant initiative, spearheaded by the Lebanese ambassador to the Holy See, Farid Elias Khazen, has resulted in the installation of a mosaic depicting St. Charbel at St. Peter’s Basilica.

In collaboration with Cardinal Mauro Gambetti, the Archpriest of St. Peter’s Basilica, this project has a historical significance, marking the presence of Lebanon within the revered basilica.

Project’s Background and Postponement:

The concept for this mosaic project was conceived several years ago by Ambassador Khazen, but its execution faced delays due to the global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ambassador Khazen shared insights with ACI Mena, CNA’s Arabic-language news partner, revealing that the mosaic was crafted at the Fabric of St. Peter, an institution responsible for maintaining the basilica.

Despite the initial setback, Cardinal Gambetti expressed commitment to seeing the project through, designating it as the final mosaic to be placed in St. Peter’s Basilica.

Unique Historical Event:

Ambassador Khazen emphasized the singular nature of this event, describing it as a moment that occurs only once in history.

The completion of the mosaic signifies the lasting Lebanese presence within St. Peter’s Basilica, contributing to the rich tapestry of art and spirituality housed in the iconic religious site.

Global Devotion to St. Charbel:

Devotion to St. Charbel extends beyond Lebanon, reaching far-flung regions with diverse cultures.

Notably, there is a strong devotion to the saint in Mexico and other parts of South America.

The roots of this devotion in Mexico trace back to Maronite immigration during the 19th century and the growing recognition of miracles attributed to St. Charbel’s intercession.

Parallel Celebrations in Lebanon:

Simultaneously, in Lebanon, the installation of the mosaic was marked by a symbolic celebration.

The bells of Maronite churches in the country rang for five minutes, accompanied by a Divine Liturgy held at St. Charbel’s tomb in the St. Maron monastery.

These events underscore the global and multifaceted impact of St. Charbel’s spiritual influence.


The installation of the St. Charbel mosaic at St. Peter’s Basilica not only represents a cultural and religious milestone but also fosters unity and shared devotion across diverse geographical landscapes.

The historical significance of this project, coupled with the simultaneous celebrations in Lebanon, emphasizes the universality of spiritual connections and the enduring legacy of saints in shaping global faith communities.

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