Patriarch Toubia Kaiss el Khazen

Patriarch Toubia Kaiss El Khazen (1756-1766) Part 1/2
Written by De Khazen Sunday, 16 October 2011 10:23



Here is a short biography of another great from El Khazen's family who became Maronite Patriarch between 1756 and 1766. We will present in Part1 his early life and how he was elected Maronite Patriarch of Antioch before tackling his main achievements and the major incidents and events that occured during his 10-year rule.



Patriarch Toubia Kaiss El Khazen (1756-1766)

Sir Toubia El Khazen, son of Abi Kanaan Kaiss El Khazen, was serving as bishop of Palestinian city Nablus as of 1733.

He later was appointed as bishop of Tripoli and then Cyprus. During his stay in Cyprus, he was the sole representative of the Maronite Church and the Patriarchal seat in Qannoubine.

In 1757, following the death of Maronite Patriarch Semaan Awwad, Maronite bishops met in Aintoura Monastery to elect a new patriarch:

The list of Maronite Bishops attending the elections is as follows:

- Filipos el Gemayel Bishop of Lostra

- Estephan el Doueihy Bishop of Batroun

- Jebrail el Hasrouni Bishop of Akka

- Youhanna Estefan Bishop of Latakia

- Germanos Sakr Bishop of Tripoli

- Mikhail el Sayegh Bishop of Damascus

- Youwassaf al Debssi al Basketnaoui Bishop of Tyr

- Antoine Mahassib Bishop of Arka

- Youssef Hbeich Bishop of Sidon

- Youssef Estefan Bishop of Beirut

- Joachim Yammine al Hadnani Bishop of Ehden

- Arsanius Al Halabi Bishop of Baalbeck

As a result of their meeting, Bishop Toubia El Khazen was elected as the new Maronite Patriarch of Antioch on the 28th of February.  Following his election, Toubia El Khazen appointed Bishop Arsanius Al Halabi as his representative and sent him to Rome to gain recognition and blessing from the Vatican and its head pope Benedictus XIV.  The letter was dispatched on the 20th of March 1756.

Here is a summarized English translation of the letter end by Patriarch Tobia El Khazen to his beatitude the pope Benedictus XIV:

"O Holiest father!

I, your humble servant Tobia El Khazen, previous bishop of Cyprus and newly elected Patriarch of Antioch for the Maronite, bow to you respectfully and kiss your feet and cordially inform your holiness that Patriarch Semaan Awwad has passed away and we have conducted the habitual rituals and prayers for the rest of his soul.  Due to his unfortunate death, my brothers and I met on the 28th of February in St Joseph school in Aintoura, and abiding by the laws and regulations of our Maronite church and the Catholic Church, elected yours truthfully as the new Maronite Patriarch, even if I find myself not worthy of such honor.

As it has been the tradition for hundreds of years, we found that it is our most sacred duty to inform your beatitude and holiness of the outcome of those elections and seek your blessing, as you are St.Peter’s successor who was told by Jesus to take care of his herd and bless his brothers in faith.

For this reason and more, I bow to you and solicit you to bless and recognize this election as such has been the tradition with my predecessors. Also, I ask your holiness to grant us the sacred shield and dispatch it with my messenger and brother Bishop Arsanius Al Halabi whom I’ve sent on my behalf given the difficulty of travelling and length of distance.

In this letter dispatched to your beatitude, I present myself as a loyal follower and servant of the Holy Catholic Church, and bow to serve the papal church and obey its fatherly advice, as well as God the savior and all the saints.  I also promise to remain loyal to the church throughout my whole life, and abide by its divine decisions."

Dispatched on the 20th of March 1756

Your humble servant

Toubia Boutros El Khazen

Maronite Patriarch of Antioch


Here is another excerpt from a speech by the Pope Benedictus XIV upon his recognition of Patriarch Tobia Boutros El Khazen.

“As far as our brothers in faith the Maronites are concerned, they have so far shown loyalty and obedience and abided by our apostolic guidance, mainly after the dispute that erupted over the election of the late Maronite Patriarch Semaan Awwad.  They have also requested the holy shield which was granted to their messenger after getting the cardinals’ approval. As such, and since the highly esteemed Patriarch Semaan has passed away, we believe his successor Brother Tobia El Khazen is worthy of such honor and recognition, as he fits all the necessary requirements and has fulfilled all needed conditions.”

This being said, Pope Benedictus XIV recognized the election of Maronite Patriarch Tobia Boutros El Khazen and granted him the roman pallium as a sign of appreciation and gratitude, along with the apostolic and fatherly blessing.



Patriarch Toubia Kaiss El Khazen
Written by Abi nasr Marie-therese Tuesday, 26 April 2005 00:00
Written by Yakoub El Khazen   
Patriarch Toubia Kaiss El Khazen of Bekaata Kanaan
He is the second in a series of three De Khazens to become Maronite Patriarchs. The other De Khazens were Youssef (Joseph) Dargham El Khazen of Ghosta (1733-1742) and Youssef (Joseph) Raji El Khazen of Ajaltoun (1845-1854).
He is the Bishop Toubia son of Kenaan Kaiss , son of Abee Nawfal Nader , son of Abee Nader Khazen , son of Abee Safi Ibrahim , son of Chediaq Sarkis El Khazen .
He was Ordained Archbishop of Cyprus in 1733 , became Patriarchal Vicar and then was elected as Patriarch in February 28, 1756 by consensus of votes, at Mar Youssef (St. Joseph) Church in Aintoura. He established his residence in Keserwan and his election was recognized by Pope Benedict XIV according to his letter of approval dated April 30, 1756.
He was one among only three Archbishops of Cyprus during Ottoman rule who were also elected Patriarchs over the whole Maronite Nation. The other two were Archbishop Estephan Dwaihi elected in 1670 and Archbishop Philippos Gemayel the Second, elected in 1795. He was also ordained Archbishop of Nablus in January 1, 1733.
He was one of the founders of the Synod held in 1736 during the term of Patriarch Youssef Dargham El Khazen, signed as Archbishop of Cyprus. He was desirous to implement its decrees. To that end he called for a synod to be held at the Monastery of St. Anthony of Beqata in Keserwan in 1756. The Synod tried to bring about the division of the eparchies as decreed by the Synod of 1736.
He was neither an adversary nor a close follower of Hindiyeh, whose reputation had increased and whose work was growing.
Died on May 29, 1766 and was succeeded by Joseph Estephan of Ghosta.