By Jocelyn Pedersen
The Norman Transcript
NORMAN — Members of Our Lady of Lebanon Maronite Catholic Church were hosts recently to a couple of special visitors.
Bishop Abdallah Zaidan of the eparchy of Our Lady of Lebanon from Los Angeles, and Fr. Elias Sleiman, superior of the Lebanese Maronite mission in the U.S., were in Norman to meet the congregation.
Also in attendance were Fr. Fadi Matni, priest at Our Lady of Lebanon, Norman, Fr. Dan Letourneau from St. Joseph’s parish in Norman and Deacon Paul Albert from Elk City.
Bishop Zaidan came to meet the community in Norman and see what the community has done since Matni’s arrival a few months ago.
Saturday evening, he had dinner with the parish council before celebrating Mass on Sunday. During Mass, the bishop blessed Louis and Mantoura Khouri, who were celebrating their 70th wedding anniversary.
Afterward, parishioners from Our Lady of Lebanon prepared a luncheon for the clergy, congregation and visitors from neighboring parishes.
“It was a busy day,” Matni said. “The Knights of Columbus were there to welcome him to the church. It was very nice of them to come and greet our bishop.”
Sleiman addressed the congregation, commending their determination to establish a beautiful spiritual home in Norman while assuring them of continuous support and love from the church’s hierarchy.
During Zaidan’s sermon, he spoke about the fourfold glory: the glory of Jesus through sacrifice, obedience, incarnation and resurrection.
Matni expressed his guests’ visit as “a blessing” and described Zaidan as being a humble man.
“He’s very, very humble, our bishop,” Matni said. “I love him for being like that.”
Matni said his parishioners have been busy over the last few months since Matni’s arrival in Norman and he said they are “blessed to have lots of activities shared with love and happiness.”
In keeping with the many activities in which the parish has engaged over the last few months, Matni announced that Our Lady of Lebanon youth will have a combined garage and bake sale fundraiser from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. today and Saturday at the church, 500 Alameda St.
For more information, contact Lina Chaghouri at 532-4788.
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