Archive for the ‘Holy Land News’ Category

Orthodox Patriarch visits Pope

Tuesday, October 24th, 2017

Pope Francis on October 23, 2017, received Beatitude Theophilos III, Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem.

The Holy Father took the occasion to renew his closeness to those suffering from conflicts in the Holy Land, noting: “The uncertainty of the situation and the lack of understanding between the parties continue to create insecurity, the restriction of fundamental rights, and the flight of many people from their land.”

The Pope asked for God’s help so that “all those involved to intensify their efforts to achieve a stable peace based on justice and recognition of the rights of all.”


Veil still mandatory

Tuesday, October 24th, 2017

2017-10-20

The jihadists have been expelled from Iraq, but the use of the veil at the University of Mosul is mandatory.

Mosul (Agenzia Fides) – The north-Iraqi city of Mosul is no longer under the control of the jihadist militias of the Islamic State since July. But at University, students still have to adapt, at least in part, to Islamic traditions and rules in the way of dressing. A great sign posted at the University entrance (see photo) reminds students of the type of clothing and hairstyle they need to observe to enter the university buildings and follow the lessons. The mandatory “dress code” prescribes the use of the veil to all students, Muslim or non-Muslim.

The University has resumed its activities and students have begun to attend courses, although large sections of university buildings were destroyed by the bombing and have not yet been renovated. In addition to the logistical disadvantages, Christian students – says Ankawa Information Agency – express concern about the intolerant strict behaviour expressed by some of their Muslim colleagues.

At the University of Mosul, the pressure exerted by Islamist radicalism had forced many Christian students to wear the veil already from 2004-2005, long before the city fell into the hands of Daesh. Now, after the tragic parenthesis of the jihadist regime, codes of conduct and provisions that seem to be related to a project of Islamization of social life, have come into force. While the signs of the growing “disappointment” of local Christian communities over the effects of military campaigns conducted to defeat the selfish Islamic State are multiplying. (GV) (Agenzia Fides, 20/10/2017)


800 years’ presence in the Holy Land

Monday, October 23rd, 2017

17/10/17

“You are ambassadors of the entire People of God,” wrote to the Custos of the Holy Land, Fr. Francesco Patton, O.F.M., a letter on the occasion of the 8th centenary of the Franciscan presence in the Holy Land.

The letter, released by the Vatican on October 17, 2017, was delivered by the prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, during his visit to the Holy Land from October 16-21, on the occasion of the celebrations of the 8th centenary, including the solemn Pontifical Mass at which he presided October 17, at the Church of Saint Savior in Jerusalem:

The Holy Father said that the Franciscans in the Holy Land are “assiduous in contemplation and in prayer, simple and poor, obedient to the bishop of Rome”, further noting that they work “next to brothers of different cultures, ethnicities and religions, sowing peace, fraternity and respect”.

“Your willingness to accompany the steps of pilgrims from every part of the world through welcome and guidance is known by all,” Pope Francis said. “I encourage you to persevere gladly in supporting these brothers of ours, especially the poorest and weakest; in the education of young people – who often risk losing hope in a context that is still without peace – in welcoming the elderly and the care for the sick, living out the works of mercy in a concrete way in daily life.”

Here is the Pope’s Letter, Provided by the Vatican

To the Most Reverend Father
FRANCESCO PATTON, O.F.M.
Custos of the Holy Land

I have learned with joy that this Custody, on the occasion of the 800 years of the Franciscan presence in the Holy Land, wished to celebrate this important and happy occasion with a number of religious, pastoral and cultural activities, all orientated towards the rediscovery of the commendable contribution of the “brothers of the cord” – as they were known – in the places where the Son of God was made flesh and lived in our midst (cf. Jn 1: 14). On that occasion, I was glad to address a special greeting to you and to all the friars, who kept the Christian witness alive, study the Scriptures and welcome pilgrims.

The seraphic Father Francis, in the Chapter of Pentecost of May 1217, opened the Order to the “missionary and universal” dimension, sending his friars to all nations as witnesses of faith, fraternity and peace; and in this way the Province of the Holy Land was created, initially referred to as “Overseas” or “of Syria”. This broadening of the horizon of evangelization was the beginning of an extraordinary adventure, which eight centuries ago led the first friars minor to disembark at Acri, where last 11 June you began your centenary celebrations, renewing your adhesion to Jesus’ calling, faithful to the Gospel and the Church.

Assiduous in contemplation and in prayer, simple and poor, obedient to the bishop of Rome, you are engaged also in the present in living in the Holy Land next to brothers of different cultures, ethnicities and religions, sowing peace, fraternity and respect. Your willingness to accompany the steps of pilgrims from every part of the world through welcome and guidance is known by all. You have dedicated yourselves to research on archaeological evidence and the detailed study of the Sacred Scriptures, taking to heart the famous affirmation of Saint Jerome, who for many years lived in retreat in Bethlehem: “Ignorance of the Scriptures is ignorance of Christ Himself” (Comm. in Is., Prol.: PL 24, 17).

I do not wish to forget, aside from the guardianship and enlivenment of shrines, your commitment to the service of the local ecclesiastical community. I encourage you to persevere gladly in supporting these brothers of ours, especially the poorest and weakest; in the education of young people – who often risk losing hope in a context that is still without peace – in welcoming the elderly and the care for the sick, living out the works of mercy in a concrete way in daily life.

Joining with my venerable Predecessors, starting from Clement VI, who with the Bull Gratias agimus entrusted to you the custody of the Holy Places, I wish to renew this mandate, encouraging you to be joyful witnesses of the Risen Christ in the Holy Land.

You are ambassadors of the entire People of God, who with liberality you have always sustained, especially through the “Collection for the Holy Land”, which contributes to ensuring that in the Land of Jesus, faith is made visible in works. In a special way you are supported, on behalf of Peter’s Successor, by the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, which in these very days is celebrating its own centenary.

Finally, I wish to recall to you the words of your Founder: “Indeed, I counsel, warn and exhort my friars in the Lord Jesus Christ, that when they go about through the world, they are not to quarrel nor contend in words, nor are they to judge others, but they are to be meek, peaceable and modest, meek and humble, speaking uprightly to all, as is fitting”. (Regula Bullata, 3, 10-11: FF85)

© Libreria Editrice Vatican


Bethsaida said to be found

Thursday, August 10th, 2017

Archaeologists are saying that they just discovered the lost Roman city of Julias, known to Christian believers as the home of three of Jesus’ apostles: Peter, Andrew and Philip. (more…)


Lebanese bishops urge help for Syrian refugees’ return

Friday, August 4th, 2017

Catholic World News

August 03, 2017

The Maronite Catholic bishops have called for a “global plan” to help refugees from Syria return to their homes, saying that their continued presence in Lebanon is straining that country’s resources. (more…)


Jubilee year of Portiuncula indulgence concludes

Friday, August 4th, 2017

Catholic World News

August 03, 2017

Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s Secretary of State, traveled to the Papal Basilica of Saint Mary of the Angels in Assisi on August 2 to celebrate the closing Mass of the 800th anniversary of the “pardon of Assisi,” also known as the Portiuncula indulgence. (more…)


Judge extends stay on deportation of Chaldean Catholics

Thursday, July 27th, 2017

Catholic World News

July 26, 2017

A federal district court judge has extended his stay on the deportation of 1,441 Chaldean Catholics and other Iraqis with standing immigration removal orders and criminal records. (more…)


Holy See favors two-state solution in Holy Land

Thursday, July 27th, 2017

Catholic World News

July 26, 2017

A Vatican representative told the UN Security Council that the Holy See continues to favor the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, in a July 25 address. (more…)


Custos: moderation, dialogue needed

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

Catholic World News

July 25, 2017

The Franciscan superior in the Holy Land has told an Italian news agency that the situation in Jerusalem is “very dangerous.” (more…)


Tomb of the Patriarchs as Palestinian heritage site

Tuesday, July 11th, 2017

Catholic World News

July 10, 2017

The UN’s Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has recognized the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron as a World Heritage Site, approving a request by the Palestinian Authority. (more…)