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2004-2005



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The Church of St. Peter at Jaffa
"And now send men to Joppa and bring one Simon who is called Peter. He is lodging with one Simon, a tanner, whose house is by the seaside." Acts 10:5-6
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Biblical Escursions: Jaffa, Tel Qasileh, Eretz Israel Museum, Ramleh, and Lod

NEWS FROM AND ABOUT THE HOLY LAND

bullet 30.6.2005: Seven new Franciscan priests ordained in Saint Saviour’s Church, Jerusalem (29.06.2005)
These Franciscans have just concluded their theological studies in the seminary of the same friary. The newly ordained priests come from various provinces of the Franciscan Order and from four different nations: Mexico, Ecuador, Poland and Slovachia. (CTS)

bullet 30.6.2005: Funeral Mass of Mgr. Jean-Baptiste Gourion (28.06.2005)
The funeral Mass of Mgr. Jean-Baptiste Gourion OSB, Abbot and Auxiliary Bishop of Jerusalem for Hebew-speaking Catholics, was held on Tuesday 28 June, at the Benedictine Abbey of Saint Mary of the Resurrection at Abu Gosh, of which Mgr. Gourion was founder. (CTS)

bullet30.6.2005: Three women bring message of unity
Three Women, Three Faiths, One Vision was a program presented last week in Richardson by the Dallas Peace Center and Partners for Peace. It featured Michal Sagi, a Jewish Israeli; Dr. Jumana Odeh, a Muslim Palestinian, and Rana Khoury, a Christian Palestinian. (Star-Telegram)

bullet28.6.2005: Pope Bids Farewell to PLO Representative
Benedict XVI received a farewell visit from Afif Safieh, director of the Office of Representation of the Palestine Liberation Organization. The executive of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas will appoint his substitute. (Zenit)

bullet28.6.2005: Israeli-Palestinian chasm illuminated in diversity
Imagine a world in which Muslims, Jews and Christians can sit down and talk about resolving their differences without rancor or bloodshed. (The Republican - Springfield,MA,USA)

bullet28.6.2005: The main commitment of Melchite Catholics: strengthening the Christian presence in the east
The conclusions of the annual synod invite the faithful to both personal witness and participation in public life. The words of Patriarch Gregory III Laham recall the teaching of John Paul II. (Asia News)

bullet28.6.2005: Mgr Gourion, leader of Hebrew-speaking Catholics in Israel, dies
The funeral takes place tomorrow in the Church of the Olivetan Benedictine Abbey of Abou Gosh, the biblical Kiryat Yearim, of which he was superior and founder. (Asia News)

bullet25.6.2005: No glory for little-known Vatican agency that funds Eastern churches
Created by the Vatican's Congregation for Eastern Churches, ROACO coordinates nearly 20 U.S. and European agencies and organizations that provide assistance to Eastern Catholic communities in Asia, Northern Africa, Eastern Europe and the Middle East. (Catholic news)

bullet24.6.2005: New Jewish Group Forms to Fight Anti-Christian Bias
Attacks on Christianity have led to the formation of a group of defenders of the faith -- that is, Jewish defenders of the Christian faith. The recently organized "Jews Against Anti-Christian Defamation" (JAACD) was formed to respond to negative criticism and attacks against Christians, and to combat prejudice against that group. (AgapePress)

bullet24.6.2005: Benedict XVI Sees "Positive Signs" in Holy Land
Benedict XVI, citing "positive signs" in the Holy Land, appealed for prayers and assistance to the peoples of the area so that reconciliation can take place. (Zenit)

bullet23.6.2005: Mons Jean-Baptiste Gourion OSB (1934†2005)
The Latin Patriarch the auxiliary Bishops and the patriarchal clerics of Jerusalem in communion with the Benedictine Olivetaine monastic community at Abou-Gosh and with the Hebrew Catholic Community have the sadness to inform you of the death of their brother and father S.E. Mgr Jean-Baptiste Gourion, OSB Abbot and Auxiliary Bishop of the Hebrew Community. (CTS Communications)

bullet23.6.2005: Jewish-Christian dialogue: a demanding miracle
Given the history of their relationships, interreligious dialogue between Christians and Jews may be seen as a "miracle", but it's also a complex and demanding endeavour. Three practitioners of interreligious dialogue share their views on what it takes to advance a dialogue often complicated by political issues. (Conseil oecuménique des Églises)

bullet23.6.2005: Gregory III Laham: “Reconciling the Church and defending the Christian vocation”
Total reconciliation of the church and defence of the Christian vocation in the Middle East: this was the main thrust of the opening speech of Greco-Melchite Patriarch, Gregory III Laham, at the Synod attended by more than 30 bishops from around the world. (AsiaNews)

bullet22.6.2005: Key concerns for Eastern churches: Ukraine, Holy Land, seminaries
Church concerns in Ukraine and the Holy Land, and the training of seminarians, will be the top items on the agenda at a meeting this week of ROACO, an organization composed of groups that provide aid to the Eastern Catholic churches. (CWNews)

bullet20.6.2005: The Russians are coming
Non-Arab Christians are the fastest growing Israeli religious community and now constitute 8-9 per cent of the non-Arab population of the state. (al-Ahram)

bullet20.6.2005: Monks use hi-tech camera to read ancient texts
Saint Catherine's Monastery hopes technology will allow a fuller understanding of some of the world's earliest Christian texts, including pages from the Codex Sinaiticus -- the oldest surviving bible in the world. (Reuters)

bullet 18.6.2005: Fr. Anton Buzo Senior Citizens' Center Opens Its Doors in Birzeit
On Sunday, July 10, the first center exclusively for senior citizens will be opened in the town of Birzeit. The ribbon-cutting ceremony will be led by H.B. Michel Sabbah, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem. The center has been named in honor of Fr. Anton Buzo. (HCEF)

bullet 18.6.2005: HCEF Shabibeh Youth Center Planned in Beit Jala
The Holy Land Christian Ecumenical Foundation (HCEF) will begin laying the groundwork for a new youth center in the Christian town of Beit Jala, a neighboring town of Bethlehem. (HCEF)

bullet 17.6.2005: Mass in honour of Saint Anthony, Special Patron of the Custody of the Holy Land
On 13 June, liturgical feast of Saint Anthony of Padova, a solemn Eucharistic celebration was held in the church of Saint Saviour in Jerusalem, in honour of this saint, who is venerated as the Special Patron of the Holy Land Custody. (CTS)

bullet 16.6.2005: The Magnificat Institute for Music. Student's Concert
St. Saviour's Church: Organ Concert (19.6.05), Concert in honor of the Holy Sacrament (23.6.05). At the Immacolata Hall near the Magnificat Institute (New Gate): The Blue Concert (21.6.05), Red Concert (24.6.05), Yellow Concert (26.6.05), Green Concert (28.6.05). (CTS)

bullet 16.6.2005: A tool for peace: the Directory of the Catholic Church in the Holy Land
As a communication tool for local Catholics, the Directory’s first English-language edition offers up-to-date information about the Church’s activities, institutions and addresses in the Holy Land. (Asia News)

bullet 16.6.2005: A Call for Co-existence not Desecration: Sacred Scriptures, Sacred Places - A Sacred Trust for Peace
The reality of Jerusalem and the Holy Land has taught us deep respect for the three Monotheistic religions so that we strive to live together in tolerance and mutual acceptance. For us this fundamental principle of mutual respect for that which each religion holds sacred is inviolable. No person or group can be permitted to trivialize, destroy or besmirch these sacred things. (Amin)

bullet 15.6.2005: Golden Jubilee of priestly ordination of the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem
On 6 June the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, His Beatitude Michel Sabbah, celebrated his 50th anniversary of priesthood. For the occasion he presided over a solemn Mass in the co-cathedral church at the Latin Patriarchate. (CTS)

bullet 15.6.2005: Holy See Assails Anti-Christianity and Anti-Semitism
The Holy See called for commitment to the struggle against anti-Semitism as well as all other forms of violence and discrimination against religions, particularly Christianity. Archbishop Antonio Cañizares of Toledo voiced this concern of the Church during the June 8-9 conference promoted by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe on "Anti-Semitism and Other Forms of Violence." (Zenit)

bullet 15.6.2005: Franciscans Preparing for 8th-Centenary Celebrations
In the years leading up to the eighth centenary of the foundation of the Order of Friars Minor, the Franciscans have prepared a program for the celebration. Under the motto "The Grace of Our Origins," the program marks the 800 years since the approval of their Rule by Pope Innocent III. (Zenit)

bullet 14.6.2005: HCEF Honors Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land at 7th International Conference
The Holy Land Christian Ecumenical Foundation Board of Directors announces awards to institutions and individuals who have contributed in outstanding ways to support the Christians in the Holy Land: the Custody of the Holy Land, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Fr. Emil Salayta and Reverend Canon Roy Enquist. (HCEF)

bullet 14.6.2005: Israeli Christian Arab surgeon spreads his skills
If you ever got mangled in a car crash, you'd want someone like Amal Khoury to put you back together again. Khoury has already mended hundreds of people who have passed through Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem where he is one of the country's top orthopedic trauma surgeons. (Israel21c)

bullet 11.6.2005: For Dead Sea, a Slow and Seemingly Inexorable Death
When the Ein Gedi Spa opened in 1986, customers walked just a few steps from the main building to take their salty dip in the Dead Sea. Nineteen years later, the water level has dropped so drastically that the shoreline is three-quarters of a mile away. (The Washington Post)

bullet 11.6.2005: Coptic leader sees harmony among Christians of Middle East
Pope Shenouda III: the dialogue with Catholics must be renewed. Christians’ flight from the Middle East is worrisome. Church property belongs to the faithful and cannot be sold. (Catholic World News)

bullet 10.6.2005: Sound of music
I lately had an historical sensation in an area where you would expect it least; namely, while walking from the main Jerusalem-Bethlehem checkpoint to the Wall. (Bethlehem bloggers)

bullet 10.6.2005: Pope tells the Jews: “No to hatred and anti-semitism”
The 40th anniversary of “Nostra Aetate” is marked by a meeting between Benedict XVI and a delegation of the International Jewish Committee on inter-religious consultations. (AsiaNews)

bullet 10.6.2005: Benedict XVI Cheered by Award for Founder of Religious Order
He Pope expressed this in a telegram sent in his name by Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Vatican secretary of state, on the occasion of the granting of this award by the Yad Vashem, the Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Authority of Jerusalem. (Zenit)

bullet 9.6.2005: Church Should Use Internet to Evangelize, Says Vatican Official
Archbishop John Foley, president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, told a meeting today: "The Internet can be a new path to God, a call to the Church to question itself on the opportunities offered by the new media to inform, educate, pray and evangelize, to take the Word of God everywhere, to reach also those who live in solitude and who perhaps would never open the door to their home." (Zenit)

bullet 9.6.2005: New magazine for Palestine’s Christian youth “to instil hope and help them say no to hatred and war”
Juthouruna (Our Roots) is the name of a new magazine mainly for Christian youth presented yesterday 7 June in Bethlehem at the local Catholic Action Hall. (Fides)

bullet 8.6.2005: Peace and all Good
I am back from my trip to Holland for two weddings in my family and four lectures about the background of the conflict in the Middle East. As far I can see the lectures were successful. (CTS)

bullet 8.6.2005: Judeo-Catholic Dialogue Is Important for Christians
The Judeo-Christian dialogue promoted by Pope John Paul II helped Christians understand the importance of Judaism in knowing their own faith, says the retired archbishop of Paris. Cardinal Jean-Marie Lustiger, who is Jewish by birth -- his mother died in Auschwitz -- highlights the important achievements of John Paul II in fostering relations with the Jews. (Zenit)

bullet 8.6.2005: Peace campaigners to be honoured with awards
Three women are to be recognised for their work for peace and justice as part of the 60th anniversary celebrations of the peace group Pax Christi. (Ekklesia)

bullet 7.6.2005: Walls built throughout Israel hem people in, keep
people out

Walls are important in Israel. Some date back thousands of years. Some are much more recent constructions. I recently returned from two weeks in Israel, where I toured many sites, including some very impressive walls… (Springfield News-Leader)

bullet 7.6.2005: Government promises Maghar NIS 10m to repair riot damages
The government will allocate NIS 10 million to compensate residents for property damage incurred during the riots in the Galilee town of Maghar four months ago, a ministerial committee announced yesterday. (Haaretz)

 3.6.2005: The fall of Ireneos I: Israel acts as the Ottoman
Empire

In the recent weeks many news reports have been published on the “excommunication” of Ireneos I, the deposed Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem. Still, the Israeli government has not yet ratified the decision taken by the Pan-orthodox Synod in Constantinople (Istanbul) last week. (AsiaNews)

bullet 2.6.2005: Conclusion of the Marian month in Jerusalem (31 May)
The evening of 31 May Christians have concluded the month dedicated to the cult of the Virgin Mary, Mother of Jesus Christ. For the occasion the Latin parish of Saint Saviour in Jerusalem has organized the traditional procession along the streets of the Christian Quarter of the Old City. (CTS)

bullet 1.6.2005: Israel Plans to Build Terminals Instead of Checkpoints, run by "Smart Cards"
The Israeli government decided to replace the military checkpoints in the West Bank and Gaza Strip to crossing point along the route of the Separation Wall alongside the construction of new terminals and crossing points between the West Bank and Israel and between Gaza Strip and Israel. (International Press Center)

bullet 1.6.2005: The 'Christian Barometer' and the Middle East
Even those who have celebrated the recent election in Iraq are concerned that it could give birth to a government dominated by Shi'ite fundamentalist parties that have little respect for the rights of women and minorities. (Antiwar)

bullet 1.6.2005: A DVD about the Franciscan missionary vocation
The General Secretariat for Evangelisation has produced the DVD “Misit vos in universo mundo (He sent you into the whole world)”. It is destined for distribution throughout the world and so there is a choice of eight languages (Croatian, English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Polish and Spanish). The aid is offered to the Franciscan Family and to all who wish to know the history and present development of the embodiment of the experience of St. Francis of Assisi. (OFM)


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