Check all the latest cultural events happening this week on TheMYM AGENDA
Guide >Religious Sites >

Saydet Bechwat Ancient Church

  • religious site

Bechwat, Baalbak district

Bechwat lies on the versant of the western chain of Mount Lebanon. It is 110km from Beirut and 19km from Baalbak. Its latitude is 1300m. It was named after an Egyptian Saint, Anba Bishey. It contains ancient ruins (oil mills, statues and sarcophagi …) that date back to the Phoenician, Roman, Byzantine and Arab periods. But the fame of the town today is due to the presence of a miraculous sanctuary, Saydet Bechwat Ancient Church (the sanctuary of our Lady of Bechwat). Lebanese people who belong to both Muslim and Christian religions visit this place for blessing or to ask for a remedy for a sick person. The church was built by the Keyrouz family which migrated from Bcharreh in 1790. Despite the renovations (1998), today it holds its first architecture. Since its construction, the temple showed many miracles and believers got many benedictions, particularly in 2004 when the appearances of Saint Mary occurred several time starting the 21 of August till today. The first appearance was to a child from Jordan, Mohamed el-Hawadi and the last was to children, Diana Ali el-Ajam and Michael Adnan Mikhail (May, 2006). Bichwat witnessed the largest and most remarkable pilgrimage on Septembre 5, 2004 when all the roads that reached it were blocked by worshipers’ cars and buses at a distance of tens of kilometers. The sanctuary celebrates our Lady’s day on August 15. Religious and public festivals are held for a week until August 21 to commemorate the appearances that took place in 2004. Continually, groups of pilgrims visit Bishwat. They come from Lebanon and from all religious sects: pilgrims also come from different parts of the world, particularly from the Arab countries (Syria, Jordan, Egypt, the Gulf …).