The Maronite Church is an Eastern Catholic Church, or Uniate Church, that follows the Roman Catholic Church. It was founded by the 4th century Syriac monk St. Maron (d. 410 CE) and grew out of the Monastery of Bait Maron in the 5th century, spreading throughout the Levant. Mass is held in Syriac-Aramaic and in Arabic. As a result of Maronite ties to Rome, the Maronite community has traditionally been isolated from the Eastern Orthodox churches and among Arabs. However, Maronite resistance to the Latinized mass has isolated Maronites among other Catholic churches as well. The Maronite population in Syria is far smaller than in Lebanon, where Maronites have exerted considerable political influence from as early as the 16th century.
Christopher George Dekki, "Maronites." The Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization, Vol. III, ed. George T. Kurian (Malden: Blackwell Publishing Ltd, 2011).