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2018
custodia.org

Appeal for the Pro Terra Sancta collection on Good Friday

“Building up the Church of the Holy Land, in its worship places and in its living stones”, was the invitation that Cardinal Leonardo Sandri made to Christians around the world.

Like every year, Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, sent an appeal for the “proTerra Sancta” collection on Good Friday to the bishops around the world.

Building up the Church of the Holy Land, in its worship places and in its living stones, is a responsibility of all of the particular Churches of Christendom.

Br. FRANCESCO PATTON, ofm
Custos of the Holy Land
“The first one to propose a collection for the Church of Jerusalem, not exactly to take place on Good Friday, was St. Paul who, almost 2000 years ago, chose, with this suggestion, to evoke the connection between the Church of Jerusalem and the Churches scattered around the world.”

H. E. Card. LEONARDO SANDRI
Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches
“It is very important to support Jesus’ places, because this is a profound desire in the soul of every Christian. When we approach His places, we hear His voice with the echo of the geographical reality that Jesus lived. It is also important to support the mission of the Holy Land, which is not only represented by the museum ancient stones, but also by the living stones of our communities. “

Br. RAMZI SIDAWI, ofm
Treasurer of the Custody of the Holy Land
“Our greatest challenge is, above all, the maintenance of the sanctuaries. Some of them need extraordinary work, which requires a lot of our effort and energy and many resources as well.”

In his letter, the cardinal talks about two churches: the Nativity Church and the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Both were restored, thanks to the collaboration and generosity of many people. But these are not the only places that require urgent attention.

Br. RAMZI SIDAWI, ofm
Treasurer of the Custody of the Holy Land
“The second one is one of the living stones of the Holy Land, represented by our parishes and schools. Schools and parishes have always had many needs that require several resources that we provided.”

And moreover: the welcoming of the pilgrims, the study and research institutes and numerous works in support of the poor. Various responses to the special multi-religious, political and socio-cultural context in which the Catholic community of the Holy Land is called to live, with its different faces, organizations and religious families.

The pilgrimage to the Holy Land is a precious way to learn, to support and, at the same time, to deepen one’s faith.

“A particular memory – the letter reads – goes to the small Christian community in the Middle East that continues to support the faith among the refugees in Iraq, in Syria, in Jordan and in Lebanon. The faces of these people question us about the truth of being Christians, their difficult lives inspire us.”

Br. RAMZI SIDAWI, ofm
Treasurer of the Custody of the Holy Land
“The Custody has decided to remain in the Middle East and in Syria and the friars have chosen to remain close to the people. This is our mission: we cannot abandon our people and our parishioners in Syria.”

H. E. Card. LEONARDO SANDRI
Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches
“Now we are able to see all this and we suffer when we witness these things. However, we must ask ourselves:
Your participation in the collection will truly help our brothers.”

Br. RAMZI SIDAWI, ofm
Treasurer of the Custody of the Holy Land
“My call to all people is solidarity among all Christians around the world, now that we really need to support the Christian presence in the Middle East.”

Br. FRANCESCO PATTON, ofm
Custos of the Holy Land
“When Saint Paul proposed this first collection, he said something beautiful: So, give according to the measure, the conviction and the width of your heart. Also, today’s sharing gesture is essential to help the Church in the Holy Land to live and also to carry forward its pastoral and social mission.”

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