On the mountains of Lebanon, in the nation of the Cedar and the Alphabet, in the Phoenician land, there the Maronite Church, has grown from a mustard seed and become a tree. The history of the Maronites was sealed by persecution and martyrdom for the sake of Faith, Freedom, and Independence.
The Maronites are those Christians who gathered around a monastery called in Syriac ‘Bet Moroon’ or the House of Maroun which was built in 452, after the Council of Chalcedon and by the request of Pope Leo.
Those Christians who defended their faith in Jesus Christ, human and divine, were called Maronites after St. Maroun, a hermit priest who became a great saint from the region of Syria. God bestowed the gift of healing on St. Maroun who lived in the open air on the mountains of Cyrrhus, near Antioch, in the 4th century AD. St. Maroun died around the year 410 AD and his disciples continued his mission.
In 936, the monastery of Bet Moroon and other Maronite monasteries were completely destroyed in Syria. Many Christians were persecuted for their belief in Jesus Christ.
The Maronites and their Patriarch had to take a very difficult decision: to leave the rich plains of Syria and take refuge in the mountains of Lebanon.
It was between 1975 and 1990 that Lebanon unfortunately experienced a destructive war where hundreds of thousands left the mountains of Lebanon to immigrate and many scattered throughout the world, which allowed the Church to grow outside of Lebanon. The Maronite Church became international. It does not only include Phoenician Maronites, Aramaic/Syriac Maronites but also American Maronites, European Maronites, Brazilian Maronites and Australian Maronites.