The Virgin Mary is from the town of Qana in Lebanon; Book Review; (March 17, 2009)
The reverend Father Youssef Yammine has recently published a book in Arabic “Jesus Christ was born in Lebanon”.
The manuscript is of 730 pages and divided into four big chapters:
1. The other Bethlehem in the district of Phoenicia,
2. Who is Christ historically?
3. The Bethlehem of Canaan in the New Testaments, and
4. Christ was born in the district of Phoenicia, and the Virgin Mary is from and was born in Qana (Lebanon).
This voluminous book is packed with documentation, references, maps, and archeological facts. I will reserve details in a series of notes at the end in order to recount smoothly the biography of the extended family of Jesus.
The story of the birth of Jesus goes as follows.
Joachim Omram and Hanna, the parents of the Virgin Mary, were from the village of Qana (ten kilometers south-east of the city of Tyr and at an altitude of 85 meters). This town of Qana was called Qana of Upper Galilee and was within the district of Phoenicia during the Seleucidand early Roman Empires). Joachim was one of the eminent personalities in the town of Qana and the region. He was a priest and had been frustrated because he could not secure any descendents.
Joachim (Yuwakeem) took his sheep to a remote area and fasted and prayed for 40 days. Hanna was also frustrated with this extended absence and decided to take off her black cloth and washed her hair and went out in the garden.
Hanna received an apparition that she will soon get pregnant and that Joachim is on his way home.
Mary was born in Qana and her parents dedicated her to the Great Temple on Mount Carmel (Mount Carmel was also in the district of Phoenicia).
When Mary was 3 years of age, she was interned in the monastery of the Great Temple in Carmel. Mary was one of the 12 virgins of the elite families in the region to be dedicated to serve in the temple and she was named “The Pigeon of Eel (God)“. (The Jews in Judea never allowed girls to serve in temples).
Joseph (future husband of Mary) was also from Qana and one of Mary’s relatives; he was one of the superintendents at the temple and he cleaned, painted and did the various tasks of maintenance.
Mary and Joseph got married and Jesus was born in the village of Bethlehem Tifone by the Carmel, close to the famous city of Dora by the seaside and north of current city of Haifa, within the district of Phoenicia (not in the Bethlehem of Judea).
Mary visited her aunt Elizabeth in Galilee who was 6 months pregnant. Jesus was presented to the Great Temple of Mount Carmel for sanctification. Jesus was lost in the same temple discussing with the priests when he was 12 of years. Jesus studied in the schools of Mount Carmel.
Joseph and Mary lived in Bethlehem by the Carmel. The town of Nazareth did not exist yet and the area was called Nazareth. When Joseph died Mary returned to her hometown of Qana where her father and grandparents were buried.
Jesus spent his youth in Qana.
Jesus was called “Jesus of Mary” to distinguish him from the other Jesus. Mary was also called “the sister of Jacob“: Hanna had remarried after the death of Joachim and gave birth to 4 offspring; the eldest son of Hanna was apparently Jacob.
In the wedding of Qana, where Jesus showed his miraculous power of transforming water into wine, Mary was in her own town and it is Jesus who was invited and came up from Lake Tiberias to join the wedding.
After the wedding, Mary and the brothers of Jesus (Jacob, Joseph, Simon, and Judah) followed him down to Cafarnaom (Capernaum) by the Lake and stayed there for a few days and then joined Jesus’ party from then on.
Qana of Upper Galilee (The Galilee of Nations) was the location where the disciples gathered for a while after the dilapidation of the first martyr Etienne.
Note 1: Mary received the “Good Tiding” from the Archangel while serving in Mount Carmel. Jesus was elevated to Heaven on Mount Carmel. The first church was built on Mount Carmel.
A church was constructedt in the town of Qana by the disciples and the Moslems venerate the tomb of Joachim called “The tomb of the prophet Omran“.
Qana was an important town for many centuries before Christ, and it became the main resting place of the disciples before venturing any further.
When Israel bombarded south Lebanon in 1996 for 15 days, one of the missiles made a large crater, 4 meters off the tomb of the prophet Omran. The excavations uncovered a buried church and the tombs of the family of Omran.
Note 2: Qana is famous today because Israel massacred over 100 civilians and gravely injured 120 when her bombs targeted a UN compound in Qana in 1996. Israel hit that same town again in 2006 and killed 50 more civilians.
Note 3: I may conjecture that Mary retained the title of Virgin because she earned it serving as one of the virgins in the Great Temple. There is this tradition in the Levant to bestow the title of nun and priest for even those who later relinquished their sacerdotal duties.
Note 4: I may be bold to offer another conjecture. Joachim was sterile and Hanna was impregnated by her relative who later became her second husband.
Note 5: Jesus was not Jewish. His family and ancestors were forced by the Jewish KingArestopoulos to abide by Moses’ Law and be circumcised since the year 103 BC.
The Jewish historian of the Jews Josephus never mentioned Jesus or the crucifixion: Jesus was not considered a Jew!
Note 6: Jesus was highly educated. He could speak Aramaic, Hebrew, Greek and Latin. He studied Law and taught Law at the university in Sidon (Lebanon)
Note 7: The name Jesus is also called Emanuel (Amanueel) which mean “Eel (God) is among us”. Thus, “God was made human“.
Note 8: The astrophysicist Reznicoff confirms that the Comet Halley that showed the way to the sages crossed Galilee and not Judea.
Note 9: Jesus was born in the year 7 BC andCaesar’s census was done in the year 10 BC, 3 years before Jesus birth.
Note 10: Herod the Great learned about the birth of the “King of the Jews” from the magies as he was boarding a ship in Akka (Acre) to Rome.
No historian ever confirmed the mass killing of males of two years and less during the reign of Herod.
Note 11: There are indications that Jesus entered Jerusalem for the first time when he was crucified.
No wonder that Jesus experienced a cultural chock when he witnessed business and usury transactions within the temple.
Jesus got hold of a whip and chased out the merchants and turned their tables over and declared: “It is said that the temple is the house of God and not a cavern for thieves”.
Note 12: Jesus was also called Rabbi (Rabuny) which means teacher in Aramaic. Jesus said to his disciples: “Do not let anyone call you Rabbi since you have only one teacher in Christ and you are all brethren”
Note 13: Jesus wore the same long white robe that the Essenes sect of Mount Carmel wore; the consecrated members were called “The White Brethren” and they were famous as healers.
The Essenes had many branches in Galilee and a prosperous one in Alexandria (Egypt) and had places for welcoming travelers and the sick.
John the Baptist, who never left the region of Galilee, baptized with water as of the Essenes traditions and baptized Jesus.
Note 14: Israel bombed Qana twice: Once on April 18, 1996 on a UN refugee compound and a second time in July 2006.