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January on Inside Middle East

The Qadisha Valley in Lebanon is famous for its ancient cave chapels, hermitages and monasteries.
The Qadisha Valley in Lebanon is famous for its ancient cave chapels, hermitages and monasteries.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • A nun from a monastery in the remote Valley of Qadisha in northern Lebanon talks
  • Gaza's Christians lament the fact they cannot visit Bethlehem and Jerusalem
  • The Iraqi Christians who survived violence and the Muslim friends who support them
  • Exclusive interview with Lebanon's Maronite Catholic leader, Patriarch Nasrallah Boutros Sfeir

(CNN) -- Qadisha Valley

The remote Valley of Qadisha in the Northern mountains of Lebanon has, for centuries, attracted pilgrims seeking peace in the area's oldest monastery, Our Lady of Qannoubine, which is believed to be 1,600 years old.

Natural caves and steep cliffs have historically kept the area isolated, appealing to visitors seeking solitude. We meet Sister Hind to find out why so many come her to rejuvenate their bodies, minds and souls.

Christians in the Holy Land

There are fewer than 50,000 Palestinian Christians left in the Palestinian territories -- a fraction of what it used to be with many more are planning their escape.

Quoting pressures from both sides, one Christian in the West Bank village of Beit Jala, near Christ's birthplace of Bethlehem, has lost all of his land to Israel's security wall and is applying for a visa to live in Australia.

Gaza's Christians lament the fact they cannot visit the holy cities of Jerusalem or Bethlehem. Paula Hancocks reports on the concerns of a shrinking minority.

Exclusive Interview with Patriarch Sfeir

In an exclusive interview, we meet Patriarch Nasrallah Boutros Sfeir head of the Maronite Catholic church in Lebanon. Now aged 90, and with a quarter of a century as the country's most influential religious representative, when he speaks both Christians and Muslims listen. He rarely gives interviews but made an exception for Inside the Middle East.

Iraq's Christians

There was a time when Christians lived in harmony in Iraq -- today the dwindling society lives in fear. Following a tragic church siege and attacks on their homes, many who swore they would not allow terror to drive them out now just want to leave. Arwa Damon meets Christians who survived the violence but now live with the nightmares and their Muslim friends standing by them in solidarity for whom the attacks make little sense.

Watch the show at the times (GMT) below:

Wednesday 5 January: 0830, 1830

Saturday 8 January: 0830, 1400, 2030

Sunday 9 January: 0630, 1830

Monday 10 January: 0430

 
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