The Lebanese patriarch of the Maronite church visited the spiritual leader of Israel’s Druze community on Friday as part of the final leg of his weeklong journey in Israel.
Cardinal Bechara Ra’i met with Sheikh Moafaq Tarif in the northern town of Isfiye, near Haifa, then traveled to the major port city and held mass with the heads of its Christian churches.
Ra’i took part in a reconciliation ceremony between Lebanese Christian and Druze earlier in May, Lebanese news outlet al-Akhbar reported.
The two religious communities fought on opposite sides of the conflict during the 15-year Lebanese civil war from 1975-1990.
Earlier this week, Ra’i celebrated mass with exiled former members of an Israeli-backed Christian militia on Wednesday as part of his controversial trip to the Jewish state.
Hundreds of Lebanese Maronites came to Saint Peter’s church in the village of Capernaum on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, where Christ is said to have delivered many of his most famous teachings.
The Lebanese cleric was condemned by media close to Hezbollah, which said traveling to arch-enemy Israel would be a “sin”.
Lebanon remains technically at war with Israel and bans its citizens from entering the Jewish state.
But Maronite clergy are permitted to travel to Israel to minister to the estimated 10,000 faithful there.