Article related to marriage and celibats in Lebanon what the Demoiselles are thinking?


While visiting a friend, her very courteous middle-aged male guest stood up to shake my hand and “politely” asked me: Should I call you Demoiselle or Madame? Flashing a big smile, which quickly turned into an expression of confusion and disturbance. I had simply answered him: “You can call me as you like – متل ما بدك”!
Clearly he was not expecting my reply, or should I say he was not expecting to reflect on whether I was a virgin or not!
Sadly that is the new Lebanese/Arab dimension of the words: demoiselle and madame…
Read more on the social pressures on sigle women in Lebanon

Ritachemaly's Blog

a great article I stumbled upon in Al Akhbar, related to Social pressures on single women , the age crisis, the stereotypes of women …

bref, I liked it!

enjoy reading it if you have time this summer 🙂

Rita Chemaly

 

Lebanon: “Misses” Don’t Miss Much

 
The idea of cohabitation is still widely frowned upon in Lebanese society. (Photo: Marwan Tahtah)

By: Nisrine Hammoud

Published Thursday, March 29, 2012

Social pressures on single women fail to acknowledge their economic independence, educational, and professional achievements, or the fact that “late marriage” is the statistical norm.

Her scattered grey hairs seem to render the trick of hiding them beneath colored hair useless. Her eyes have lost their former glow. Her facial lines are “under control” thanks to cosmetics whose container “annoys” her, as it suggests her age. Her stomach is slightly rounded. The fat refuses to burn. She gestures…

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A New Generation of Bishops?


Why am I not surprised that the new reform in the Catholic Church will start yet again in Germany. Pope Francis shook the world almost a year ago with his “who am I to judge?” He spoke as a true disciple of Christ! Today, his words are translated by actions, actions of wisdom, tolerance, openness, compassion, evolution and above all reform. Meet Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki of Berlin, recently appointed to Germany’s largest archdiocese: Cologne.

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Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki

As we approach the one year anniversary of Pope Francis’ famous “Who am I to judge?” remark,  we are looking to see what signs of change there might be in the rest of the church.  Yesterday, we looked at how some U.S. bishops have not been following Francis’ lead.  Today we look at how Francis has made an epsicopal change which is more in line with his apparent new outreach model.

Pope Francis’ welcoming tone has ignited hope for change in the Church, but many observers believe it will be be his episcopal appointments, and not any words or acts, that will leave the most lasting impression. One recent appointment is being celebrated as a sign that bishops more in line with Pope Francis are entering the hierarchy.

Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki of Berlin is being moved to Germany’s largest and wealthiest archdiocese, Cologne. Berlin’s Tagesspiegel newspaper said of this development:

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Transgender Woman Prepares to Enter Carmelite Convent


The world is in a constant mode of transformation. The Catholic Church is now embracing one of its own Transgender disciples to enter the clergy. A big first step and more to expect from the Church of Pope Francis

Bondings 2.0

One of the places where Catholicism and gender are most strongly inscribed together is the area of vowed religious life.  There are communities for only men and other communities for only women.  What if your gender doesn’t fit into this binary?

Tia Michelle Pesando

That question is being answered in London, Ontario, where a transgender woman is preparing to enter a community of Carmelite women.  When Canada’s Tia Michelle Pesando, who is already living as a consecrated virgin, is accepted into the community, it is being said that she will be the world’s first transgender nun.

CTV News reported that Pesando, who is a hermaphrodite* (born with physical characteristics of both male and female) has already begun a process of taking hormones to live as a woman.  But the process of becoming a nun is more a spiritual, than a physical, notion for her.  As CTV News stated:

“Two years…

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Fired Gay Teacher Files Legal Complaint in a Case Where Ironies Abound


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The running controversy over LGBT people being fired from jobs in Catholic schools and parishes has mostly quieted down in the last month.  That silence, though, is probably due more to the fact that schools are on break and parishes are in “lite” mode for the summer than because of any moratorium on firings.

Flint Dollar

The topic surfaced again this week with news that one fired teacher is filing an equal opportunity claim against the Catholic school that fired him.

Flint Dollar, who was fired from his job as a music teacher at Mount de Sales Academy, Macon, Georgia, when it was learned that he intended to marry a man.

Dollar has had a difficult time seeking legal recourse in this situation.  This week, his lawyer announced that they found grounds to make a legal case against the school.  National Public Radioreports:

Since neither federal law nor state law…

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Special report: Lebanese-Brazilians


A beautiful and well-researched piece by Joe Dyke documenting the Lebanese migration to Brazil from the late 1800s till today… Published in the Executive Magazine, July 2014

Joe Dyke

I have recently completed a month-long trip to Brazil in which I was reporting extensively on the Lebanese-Brazilian diaspora (and watching the World Cup!) For those that don’t know, there are perhaps twice as many Brazilians of Lebanese descent as there are people inside Lebanon itself. They are also hugely powerful and economically successful.

One of the first ships to take Lebanese people to Brazil One of the first ships to take Lebanese people to Brazil

As such I spent a few weeks meeting senior Lebanese-Brazilians, including an interview with Michel Temer – Brazil’s vice-president. I also wrote an extensive history of Lebanese emmigration to Brazil, which was fascinating to research and write. I have copied and pasted the first part of it below.

You can view all the articles here.

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Syrian Refugees in Lebanon: Is Anybody Listening?


The International Community, the US, EU and the UN commend Lebanon for being cooperative and receiving more Syrian Refugees while allies of the EU and the US such as Jordan and Turkey have taken a clear position towards closing their borders in consideration of their national security and incapacity of managing the what we know now is going to be a long crisis with no ends or solutions any time soon.
Yes, Lebanon is commanded for being collaborative, but in reality it is commanded for being weak and unable to take a firm position toward a crisis that should be the responsibility of the International Community and not just that of the 4 million Lebanese.
If the international Community is REALLY concerned about the Syrian Refugees safety and security, they have two options: either provide them with the needed 400 million dollars monthly to ensure their bare survival in Lebanon or host them in their own countries. But to push Lebanon to receive more refugees and to refrain from providing them with support, then accuse Lebanese of xenophobia and racism is pure hypocrisy!

What alarms me the most is that I am seeing more xenophobia among the most liberal of the Lebanese civil society, simply because what is happening is just inflicting worry and hardship to all Lebanese throughout Lebanon. What is even more alarming are the hypocritical comments of some NGO leaders who are benefiting from the donations and support given to the Syrian Refugees and who continue to mislead the international community about the reality of the situation on the ground. This is the beginning of a crisis which will impact seriously Israel’s security too. Maybe then the international community will look at it more seriously…

The below article from Eye on the East says it all. Please take a moment to read it!

Eye on the East

Talking about the growing, or rather alarming, number of Syrians that have sought refuge in Lebanon since 2012 is very tricky. There is a very fine line between the humanitarian aspect of the issue and racism and intolerance, from a population that should know more than anyone else, the meaning of war and the pain of having to leave one’s home behind.

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Even an Apology from Singapore Archbishop Causes Harm and Displays Ignorance


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Archbishop William Goh of Singapore

Singapore’s Archbishop William Goh has apologized to lesbian and gay Catholics for disparaging remarks he made in late June, which has satsified some who now seek furthered dialogue and angered others in the small Asian nation.

Goh released the first open letter to Catholics in the archdiocese on June 21, allegedly in an attempt to make clear the hierarchy’s position on family. Gay Asia News reports on the contents, quoting parts of the letter:

“The Church ‘recognizes that there are individuals who are attracted to people of the same sex’ but ‘continues to maintain, that the family, comprising a father, mother and children, remains the basic building block of society,’ he said.

“It ‘upholds the view that LGBT sexual relationships are not in accordance with the plan of God,’ he said adding that ‘this kind of lifestyle should not be promoted by Catholics as it is detrimental to…

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Religious Leaders Want Right to Discriminate in Obama’s LGBT Executive Order


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President Obama meets with Pope Francis, who has asked Catholic leaders to refrain from judging LGBT people and instead build up the common good for all

Prominent Catholics have teamed with other religious leaders in calling on President Barack Obama to include extensive religious exemptions in his promised executive order which will state that federal contractors cannot discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. These religious leaders are attempting to enshrine anti-LGBT discrimination into law, and to further mask it as religious belief.  Such an action raises troubling questions on just where the hierarchy of the Catholic Church in America is focused.

Fourteen religious leaders with close ties to the president submitted a letter to the White House on Tuesday, including Catholic Charities CEO Fr. Larry Snyder and Dr. Stephen Schneck, director of the Institute for Policy Research & Catholic Studies at The Catholic University of America. Michelle Boorstein of The Washington…

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Will US Bishops Stop Obsessing About Marriage At Last?


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The National Catholic Reporter published an editorial last week firmly criticizing the American bishops’ ongoing involvement in the now terminal debate over same-gender marriage rights.

NCR‘s jumping off point is San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone’s recent appearance at the March for Marriage, which places the Church in league with anti-gay groups like the National Organization for Marriage who have ties to international LGBT persecutions in places like Uganda and Russia. Of this, NCR writes:

“No amount of claiming the church’s love for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community will disguise the reality of the company one has to keep in order to further the cause of opposing same-sex unions.”

Cordileone is given credit for affirming the Church’s commitment to upholding each person’s dignity, regardless of sexual orientation, but with a major caveat. NCR writes:

“Underlying the sincere declarations of love for all of the God’s children is the real…

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Catholics Seek Justice in Church Worker Firings Cases


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Share this graphic on Facebook!Share this graphic on Facebook!

Employment disputes for LGBT and ally Catholic Church workers are making headlines nationwide. Below, Bondings 2.0 provides updates on several incidents in cases we have been tracking. You can find out more information by clicking the provided links.

Flint Dollar

Band teacher Flint Dollar was fired from a Sisters of Mercy school in Macon, Georgia recently, after plans to marry his partner became known. Students, parents, and local supporters have been resisting the firing, organizing a petition with more than 3,600 signatures, a Facebook group, and the Twitter hashtag #SaveDollar. The Telegraph reports three school board members–Kay Gerhardt, Vickie Hertwig, and Joe Claxton– resigned in support of Dollar.  Catholics United has called on Mount de Sales Academy to reverse the decision.

The Save Flint Dollar Facebook group is also reporting that Stacey Eubanks Herrara, the nursery director at St. Joseph’s Church,Macon, resigned rather than…

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