Qatar's New St. Charbel Church: Welcoming Faith and Unity

Qatar's New St. Charbel Church: Welcoming Faith and Unity

Construction of the St. Charbel Maronite Church in Doha, Qatar is nearly finished, with plans to open its doors to worshippers in 2025, coinciding with the Catholic Church’s Jubilee Year, as revealed by Father Charbel Mhanna of Qatar’s Maronite parish.

In an interview with ACI Mena, CNA’s Arabic-language news partner, Mhanna detailed that St. Charbel will be the country’s largest church, accommodating around 3,000 people and open to all Catholics. Once completed, it will be Qatar’s second Catholic church, alongside the existing Church of Our Lady of the Rosary.

Though precise statistics on Qatar's Christian population are unavailable, Mhanna estimates there are nearly 1 million Christians, with about 70% identifying as Catholic. Around 12,000 belong to the Maronite rite, which maintains full communion with the pope.

Addressing religious freedom in Qatar, Mhanna praised the country's policy on church construction and its leading role in promoting religious tolerance and acceptance.

"All Catholic and non-Catholic churches practice their faith in the religious complex," Mhanna stated. "As Maronites, we conduct all our rituals freely within the religious complex to avoid any issues."

Mhanna highlighted the role of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which oversees church matters, requiring permission for liturgies and events. Additionally, he emphasized participation in the annual interfaith dialogue conference organized by the Doha International Center for Interfaith Dialogue, involving representatives from all religions in Qatar.

Regarding support for church construction, Mhanna noted that while the government provides land for church buildings, construction costs are covered by faithful and generous donors. This model was exemplified by the Church of Our Lady of the Rosary, which was inaugurated in 2008 on land donated by the former emir in 2006.

Mhanna emphasized the diverse community within Qatar, with participation in Masses and activities from all Eastern churches.

The community relies on donations for funding and anticipates celebrating the consecration of St. Charbel Church’s altar during the Church’s Jubilee Year, alongside the launch of catechism classes and various activities.

The comments posted here are not from Cnews Live. Kindly refrain from using derogatory, personal, or obscene words in your comments.