Notice of Motion- Welcoming His Beatitude and Eminence Patriarch Cardinal Mar Bechara Boutros Rai, Maronite Patriarch of Antioch and All the East

Today the Hon. Shaoquett Moselmane MLC introduced a Motion in the Legislative Council of NSW Parliament noting the visit of His Beatitude and Eminence Patriarch Cardinal Mar Bechara Boutros Rai, Maronite Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, to Australia on 24 October to 7 November 2014.
His Eminence will be received by the Australian Lebanese Community and the Maronite Bishop of Australia, His Grace Bishop Antoine-Charbel Tarabay.
The Hon. Shaoquett Moselmane then calls on the Legislative Council to Congratulate His Grace Bishop Antoine-Charbel Tarabay, Maronite Eparchy of Australia and the Australian Lebanese and Maronite Community and warmly welcome His Beatitude and Eminence Patriarch Cardinal Mar Bechara Boutros Rai, Maronite Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, during his Australian visit from 24 October to 7 November 2014,
Mr Moselmane says—
Mr PRESIDENT:
I give notice that on the next sitting day I will move:

1. That this House notes that:

(a) His Beatitude and Eminence Patriarch Cardinal Mar Bechara Boutros Rai, Maronite Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, will be visiting Australia and will be received by the Australian Lebanese Community and the Maronite Bishop of Australia, His Grace Bishop Antoine-Charbel Tarabay, from 24 October to
7 November 2014,

(b) this visit is of the utmost significance not only for Australia’s Maronite community, but for all Middle Eastern communities,

(c) the Maronites make up the largest proportion of Australian Lebanese and they remain one of the principal ethno-religious groups in Lebanon,

(d) His Beatitude is the spiritual shepherd of the Maronite Church and an ambassador of peace and harmony for all Lebanese as a prominent figure in Lebanon and the Middle East,

(e) His Eminence was born in Himlaya, Matn District of Lebanon on 25 February 1940, he attended Coll├Ęge Notre Dame de Jamhour, a Jesuit school in Lebanon, entered the Mariamite Maronite Order on 31 July 1962 and was ordained as a priest on 3 September 1967,

(f) from 1967 to 1975 he was responsible for the Arabic transmissions of Vatican Radio, in 1975 he received a PhD in canon and civil law and he also studied for three years at the Lateran University in Rome,

(g) His Eminence was consecrated as Auxiliary Bishop of Antioch on 12 July 1986, by His Beatitude Patriarch Cardinal Mar Nasrallah Boutros Sfeir and on 9 June 1990, he was appointed Bishop of Byblos,

(h) in 2003, His Eminence was elected Secretary of the Maronite Synod and in 2009, he was appointed President of the Lebanese Episcopal Commission for the Media,

(i) at 71, he was elected Maronite Patriarch of Antioch and All the East on 15 March 2011, after receiving more than two-thirds of the votes of the 39 bishops following the resignation of Patriarch Sfeir, and he formally requested and received ecclesiastical communion from Pope Benedict XVI,

(j) on 7 March 2012, Patriarch Rai was appointed a member of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches and was created a Cardinal by Pope Benedict XVI in a consistory on 24 November 2012,

(k) His Eminence is the fourth Maronite Patriarch created Cardinal,

(l) on 31 January 2013, Cardinal Patriarch Rai was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI to serve as a member of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerants, and the Pontifical Council for Social Communications,

(m) in February 2013, following the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI, Patriarch Rai, being a Cardinal, became a candidate to the papacy and he participated as a cardinal elector in the conclave that elected Pope Francis,

(n) Cardinal Rai was one of four cardinal-electors from outside the Latin Church and and is also the first Maronite Cardinal Patriarch ever to participate in a papal conclave, and

(o) Cardinal Patriarch Rai was named a Member of the Congregation for Catholic Education by Pope Francis on Saturday 30 November 2013. 

2. That this House congratulates His Grace Bishop Antoine-Charbel Tarabay, Maronite Eparchy of Australia and the Australian Lebanese and Maronite Community and warmly welcome His Eminence Patriarch Cardinal Mar Bechara Boutros Rai, Maronite Patriarch of Antioch and All the East.

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