Thursday, January 6, 2011

Lebanese Fraud Monk

It’s been a while since I started thinking about creating my own blog. I postponed that because I do not have enough time to manage it the way I want, but the following story left me with no other choice!

A week before Christmas, I was in Zouk (Jounieh) heading to ‘Le Mall’, when I noticed a monk standing on the highway at ‘Marché du pont’ trying to get a lift.

I stopped for him (you know, Christmas spirit). Below is some of the conversation:

  • His name is Elie (Atallah I guess, and around 25-30 years old), and he’s from Chouf – Mount Lebanon.
  • His parents died when he and his sister were too small to remember.
  • They both lived on the streets for almost 10 years.
  • He was the only one taking care of his little sister.
  • A priest saw them once, and decided to take care of them.
  • His sister is married now and lives in Ain l Remmeneh (where he said he was heading to spend the night), and he’s a monk in ‘Kfifane’ monastery.
  • He has cancer. He said that he has a scanner tomorrow and a big operation on Monday.
  • During his conversation, he apologizes many times for bothering you with his discussion, but he says that he's in too much pain and he needs to talk to forget about it.
  • He gives you a little prayer ant two Rosaries that he claims doing them, a small one for the hand and a bigger one.

Until now, the story is credible. The thing is that he tells you that he lost his money on his way. When I asked him if I can help and if he accepts money, he said ‘like you wish’.
So I told him that I can get him to Ain l Remmeneh since I’m going to ‘Le Mall’ but I need to pass by a friend and take her with me.
When we got there, he asked me to stop for him near St. Mary statue because he needs to pray before heading home.
I sensed something weird about him, and when we arrived I didn’t mention money. I told my friend that I felt like he was a fraud. But later on, I felt really bad about it.
Two days ago, a colleague told me that he was in Harissa the night before and he gave a lift for a monk who told him the exact same story!!!! Gave him rosaries, and told him that he lost his money, and that he has an operation tomorrow (if it is a weekday, he tells you that he has an operation tomorrow).

My poor friend gave him money!

It turned out to be a fraud!

So if you ever encountered this fraud imposter monk… Kick his ASS! Or let the police do that!
Can we blame him? or this is a consequence for the life he's living?!

Anyway... Keep on surviving.


  1. Congrats for your blog :)
    Interesting post, Keep them coming :)

  2. fraud or not; people asking for money have most probably lost dignity and self worth. At least he is not stealing from you or braking into your car or house, he is asking for money, just give him and wish him well. that is what i do, and i thank God that it is not me in the street begging and lying... happy new year!

  3. First of all, thank you both for showing your interest :)
    Leelou, maybe he's not stealing or breaking into my house, but he's telling a whole lie without asking for money, to make me feel bad and give him some. Maybe he's dressed up as a Christian monk, and he doesn't know anything about Christianity!
    I'd help someone in need who asks for money, but I won't help an imposter lying and using a whole religion to get what he needs. I guess he's making lots of money for just lying on people... Same to you! :)

  4. My dad met a guy like that in the airport. but he knew it was a fraud somehow too. He wasn't a monk though.So I guess others try this technique as well.

  5. Thanks for your comment Mariam.
    He's definetly not a monk, and I don't think he's even religeous! Same purpose, different techniques.