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   Many thanks  to Mr Assaad Said Coorie from Sydney, Australia for his invaluable input in the compilation of this page.
The Lebanese Maronite Order was founded in 1695 by three young Maronite from Aleppo, Syria. The Patriarch Estephan Al Douaihi encouraged the founders and established them in the Monastery of Mart Moura in Ehden. As the Order grew quickly, they established in Mar Lishaa, Bcharri (1696) and in Qozhaya (1708). Those establishments of Jebbet Bcharri enabled the order to gain confidence and spread towards the Chouf and Kisrwan. ln less than forty years, the Order counted 210 monks living in 12 monasteries.(1).

Given the privileged relations between the Monastery of Qozhaya and Kfarsghab and the prestige of the new Order, it was natural to see young people from Kfarsghab joining the order in the pioneering days. It is the case of Father Abdallah Habqouq who joined the founders prior to the official confirmation of the Order in 1698 and became one of the first administrators (Mudabbir) (2). On the 17 of February 1710, Brother Boulos of Kfarsghab took his vows in Mar Lishaa, Bcharri (3)

The eighteenth century
During the eighteenth century, the Order attracted no more than 10 to 15 monks from Kfarsghab. The demographical weakness of Kfarsghab in the first half of the century, the purchase of the winter village of Morh Kfarsghab and its development from 1748 and possibly the conflict inside the Order that started in 1748 between the Aleppine monks and the Lebanese ones and that eventually led to the splitting of the order into two, could be behind this modest number of monks from Kfarsghab. From the chart below, we observe however a steady growth all along the eighteenth century.

The nineteenth century
The first half of the nineteenth century witnessed a doubling in the vocations from Kfarsghab. Between 1800 and 1850, the Order received 8 to 10 monks from Kfarsghab. Between 1850 and 1875, things changed dramatically. In this period, more than 23 monks from Kfarsghab took their vows. Apparently, from 1830 and onwards, there was a surge in the number of births in Kfarsghab. The baby-boomers of the 1830 -  1840's started joining massively the Order due most probably to the lack of economic perspectives. Also, the opening of a school in the neighboring village of Bane in 1806 by the Lebanese Maronite Order for the basic instruction of the children of Kfarsghab and Bane could have served as a channel of detection and recruitment of talents for the Order.
evolution of the number of monks

From 1875, the emigration to the Americas and Australia gave a new outlet for the young people of Kfarsghab. Between 1875 and 1900, only 3 vocations were recorded for Kfarsghab. Vocations from Kfarsghab ceased on 17 December 1898 when Br Ephraim Saliba Abood II joined. Brother Ephraim died on 9 April 1947. Overall, the Lebanese Maronite Order attracted 43 young people from Kfarsghab, making of this village the 15th most important contributor to the Order, among the 382 villages that counted monks (4). Still in 1900, Kfarsghab counted 13 monks among its sons, representing 4% of the adult male population compared to 0.8% for the average of the region of Jebbet Bcharri. (5) 

Our monks
When we take a look at the names and the monasteries of the monks from Kfarsghab, we see that 75% of them were assigned to monasteries located in North Lebanon, most of them being in Qozhaya. The objective of the reform that took place after the revolt of Qozhaya in 1875 was to assign the monks in a different region from their region of origin. 4 monks of Kfarsghab participated in the 1875 revolt, one of them, brother Boutros, being among its leaders. As a result, the power of Qozhaya was broken, its lands divided between several monasteries and its monks (around 200 at its height) distributed in different Monasteries. It is possible, according to some historians (6), that this reform could have had a negative impact on the vocations from Jebbet Bcharri whose monks were known to be hard-headed and independent. Hadn't they beaten the Mutassarif, Rustum Pasha, and conducted guerilla-type operations to free the monks taken prisoners to Beiteddine after the revolt. Hard-headed, yes, they are. But this is what gave them the courage to build an impressive Order at the service of the country : monasteries, schools, churches, farms, universities ... spreading over the five continents. The Lebanese Maronite Order is the Heart of the Maronites. 

Below, you will find the names of 43 of our monks.

(1) - For Information on the Lebanese Maronite Order, see - Histoy of the Lebanese Maronite Order
(2) - See on this website, see - Bishops & Superiors
(3) - in Reverend Maroun Karam - "Monks of Our Village" -  Editor Kaslik - 1975 - p. 163
(4) - in Reverend Maroun Karam - "Monks of Our Village" -  Editor Kaslik - 1975 - General Table N2
(5) - in Dr Jean Nakkhoul - Historical Demography of Nahiyat Bcharri from end 19 Century till beginning of 20th Century - Published in the Accounts of the First Congress on Jebbet Bcharri History - National Committee of Gibran - 1998 - p. 158
(6) - Information taken from the book "Mar Antonios Qozhaya Monastery" by Fr. Antoine Mokbel - Private editor Ghazir - October 2000

Names of the natives of Kfarsghab who were monks in the Lebanese Maronite Order (to be completed)
Birth dates are estimated from the records of LMO
Name Civil Name Status Birth Trial Vows Monastery Death Monastery Comments
Br. Boulos NA monk 1690 NA 17 Feb. 1710 Mar Lisha      
Fr. Athanasios   monk 1728       1788    
Fr. Abdallah I   monk 1744       1819 Kfifane Ordined 25 Feb. 1784
Br. Seraphin I   monk 1750   1 Nov. 1772 Tamish      
Fr. Bernardos   monk 1753           Ordined 13 Sep1793
Fr. Antonios NA Hermit 1756 NA 17 Jan. 1794 Mayfouq 10 Jun. 1856 Qozhaya Was a model of privations and qualities. He ate only bread and oil. Ordined Aug. 1797
Fr. Ephrem   monk 1760       14 Jul. 1833 Qozhaya  
Br. RaphaŽl   monk 1766   20 Jan. 1788 Mayfouq 23 Apr. 1813 Hawb  
Br. Youssef   monk 1766       3 Apr. 1826 Naameh  
Br. Germanos   monk 1784   1 Mar. 1808 Mayfouq 24 Dec. 1854 Mayfouq  
Br. RaphaŽl I   monk 1788   25 Dec. 1818 Kahlounieh 23 Oct. 1878 Qozhaya nicknamed Al Hallit
Br. Estephan I   monk 1790       26 Dec. 1851 Qozhaya  
Br. Yaacoub   monk 1791   1 Apr. 1817 Mayfouq 25 Apr. 1876 Qozhaya  
Fr. Maroun I   Superior 1795   17 Dec. 1813 Kahlounieh 1 Nov. 1850 Maad Superior of Qozhaya from 1843 to 1845
Br. Maroun   monk 1798   25 Dec. 1828 Qartaba      
Br. RaphaŽl II   monk 1800   1 Oct. 1827 Hawb 15 Jul. 1864 Qozhaya  
Br. Tobias   monk 1801       5 Dec. 1871 Qozhaya  
Br. Biyammine   monk 1830   1 Nov. 1851 Mar Moussa 25 Dec. 1903 Qozhaya  
Br. Zakka   monk 1830   31 Mar. 1850 Mar Moussa 20 Jun. 1888 Qozhaya  
Br. Antonios Saba Boutros monk 1830 1 Jan. 1857 9 Feb. 1859 Qozhaya 9 Apr. 1910 Jdaideh From the Laban Family
Br. Andreus I Gebrayel monk 1833 1 Feb. 1851 27 Mar. 1853 Qozhaya 3 Jan. 1905 Qozhaya  
Br. Ephrem I Francis Saliba monk 1835 8 Jan. 1857 9 Feb. 1859 Qozhaya 10 May 1880 Qozhaya  
Br. Boulos   monk 1836   6 Jan. 1856 Mayfouq 10 Sep. 1880 Tartous Died while collecting money for Qozhaya
Br. Abdallah I   monk 1836   23 Feb. 1854 Mayfouq 9 Dec. 1917   participant in the revolt 1875-1878
Fr. Maroun II Youssef Sam Superior 1836 4 May 1857 30 Jun. 1859 Qozhaya 30 May. 1916 Al Qarn Superior of Qozhaya from 1886 to 1890 - Built the place known as AlZiara as well as the dome of the church. Improved the property of AÔn Baqra and built the water tank of AÔn Al Smaileh. Ordined 23 Sep.1863
Br. RaphaŽl III   monk 1838       8 Dec. 1916 Jdaideh  
Br. Youhanna Louis monk 1838 3 Dec. 1853 25 Jan. 1855 Qozhaya 15 Oct. 1909 Echach  
Br. Mikhail   monk 1839   17 Jan. 1856 Tamish 20 Feb. 1911 Bsarma  
Br. Makarios MikhaŌl monk 1839 11 Feb. 1857 24 Apr. 1859 Qozhaya 14 Sep. 1897 Bsarma  
Br. Andreus II   monk 1840   16 Apr. 1865 Mayfouq 25 Aug. 1887 Qozhaya participant in the revolt 1875-1878
Br. Germanos   monk 1840   16 Apr. 1865 Mayfouq 3 May. 1895 Jdaideh  
Br. Maximus Ghazi monk 1842 11 Feb. 1857 24 Apr. 1859 Qozhaya 27 Jul. 1862 Mayfouq  
Fr. Boutros   monk 1842 ca 1865 ca 1867 Qozhaya 8 Feb. 1920 Qozhaya one of the leaders of the revolt 1875-1878
Fr. Youssef   monk 1845   9 Apr. 1865 Mayfouq 25 Aug. 1898 Assi  
Br. Abdallah II   monk 1847       _1918 Qozhaya  
Br. Elias   monk 1851   17 Jan. 1872 Qozhaya 29 Jul. 1918 Echach participant in the revolt 1875-1878
Br. Moubarak   monk 1852       25 Feb. 1876 Qozhaya  
Br. Estephan II   monk 1855   17 Jan. 1874 Tamish 20 Feb. 1915 Echach  
Br. Ignatius   monk 1855   15 Feb. 1875 Qozhaya 7 Sep. 1881 Qozhaya  
Br. Mattia   monk 1856   17 Jan. 1872 Qozhaya 24 May. 1937 Bsarma Ordined Fr. Antonios on 21 Dec. 1879
Br. Hanna Shaker monk 1876 19 Jan. 1896          
Br. Andreus III Elias Abboud monk 1881 11 Apr. 1895 19 Apr. 1897 Hawb 2 Mar. 1938 Mayfouq  
Br. Ephrem II Saliba Abboud monk 1882 19 Jan. 1896 17 Jan. 1898 Hawb 9 Apr. 1947 Qozhaya  

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