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Benjamin Weir (December 20, 1923[1]—October 14, 2016[2]) was an American hostage in Lebanon (1985).

Weir, who with his wife Carol served as missionaries in Lebanon with the Presbyterian Church (USA) (PC [USA]) for nearly 30 years, was kidnapped off the streets of Beirut in May 1984.[3] The kidnapping was done by an Islamic fundamentalist group, Islamic Jihad, that later evolved into Hezbollah. He was freed 16 months later in exchange for US anti-tank weapons, as part of the Iran-Contra Affair. Shortly thereafter he was elected moderator of the 1986 General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church, the highest elected office in that denomination.

He remains one of the world’s most respected voices for peace and reconciliation in the Middle East for the past 30 years.

The book "Hostage Bound Hostage Free" tells the story of his captivity from his perspective as well as his wife's.

While a student at UC Berkeley, Weir was initiated into the Beta chapter of Alpha Gamma Omega, a Christ-Centered Fraternity. Later he attended San Francisco Theological Seminary.[citation needed]

Weir died on October 14, 2016.[2]


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b "Former PCUSA Moderator Benjamin Weir dies".
  3. ^ "Benjamin Weir's Secret Passage". TIME. 1985-09-30. Retrieved 2010-01-27.
Religious titles
Preceded by
Elder William H. Wilson
Moderator of the 198th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA)
Succeeded by
Elder Isabel W. Rogers