Showing posts with label Holy Land. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Holy Land. Show all posts

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Israel is Blocking the Accounts of the Latin Patriarch -- "Come, Pilgrimage in the Holy Land, Eat, Drink and Pray With Us"

(Jerusalem) "Israel has blocked the accounts of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem," says Msgr. Giacinto-Boulos Marcuzzo, Archbishop of the Patriarchate and Patriarchal Vicar for Israel.  The Patriarchal Vicar charges that several Israeli communal representatives have seized Church property.  "Even my account was blocked,"  the Bishop told Asia News.    The entire situation has "worsened."   There is really "no real preparedness to restore peaceful relations. There is always a pretext to put it off.  Every day there are new deaths, but nothing happens to restore talks." 

Many Fronts: "Soon electricity and water will be cut off." 

There are many fronts that have encircled the Christians of the land. One has fallen upon Catholic schools, which will suffer drastic cuts from the Israel Ministry of Educaton.  Another front is a concerted attack from several community offices against the property and accounts of the Church. "We have been informed recently that in the past days that several  town halls have blocked the accounts of clerics, religious and the church. It is an attempt to force the Church to pay a special tax which religious communities have been free from since the time of the Ottomans."
Even the account of the Patriarchal Vicar has been blocked: "with the bills that come to the house,  and the blocked account, we run the danger that we'll soon have our electricity, gas and water shut off."
The same is reported by the Maronites from Haifa and religious communities in Jaffa.  "The decisions were made by the city authorities." The government, however has done nothing about it. Officially the government says they are against the measures, but that hasn't helped us.  We're not seeing a great desire to clarify the problem. The Nuncio has intervened with the foreign ministry, but that hasn't changed anything."   The accounts, "don't merely impact individual persons.“ says the Patriarchal Vicar. They also affect schools and hospitals.
The Bishop also complains that the significant drop in the numbers of pilgrims is "not encouraging". As is seen, "we must speak of a complete crisis."

Holy Land pilgrimages  have decreased since 2015 by 30 percent, compared to the number last year. "All European countries, except Poland, have decreased. Internationally, pilgrims are coming from Nigeria, Korea, Japan, Indonesia and the Philippines, but overall there is crisis. "

The  decline of pilgrims has had a negative impact on the Christian communities in the Holy Land whether in Israel, in the Palestinian dsssssssterritories or in Jordan. "The pilgrims support the Christian community. If there are no pilgrims, many Christians have no income. With all the consequences for their families. "

The reason for the fall in the number of pilgrims has been the fear of attacks, the war in the Middle East and the Islamic State (IS).

Fear unfounded: "We pilgrims are respected"

"It is important to tell people that the horrific images on TV have nothing to do with the Holy Land. We have our problems, but these are other problems that are not from a pilgrimage to the Holy Land on the way. With us, no pilgrims are attacked. Christians and Muslims here respect pilgrims seeking God, so no one has to fear. "

All in all, said the Vicar, the situation in the Middle East is that peace is the crucial prerequisite to restore coexistence and dialog. The US and the EU should "correct their false Middle East policy: The support and financing of terrorists must be stopped, not only for the Islamic state , but for all terrorist groups."

Initiatives of the Holy Year of Mercy

In the Holy Year of Mercy a number of initiatives of all Christian communities has been launched. These mainly include visiting the sick, in hospitals and at home. "The sick can be powerful witnesses by the example of  Saint Mariam Bawardi. We are also distributing relief supplies and food for the needy in Gaza and for the refugees in Jordan. During Lent, all priests have committed increasingly to make  confession available. "

"Come to us for a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, eat, drink and pray with us"

The Christians of the country would be left alone and isolated,  which is true even for the children. A Finish diplomat recently saw this when visiting the Finnish ambassador in a Catholic school in Galilee. "She was welcomed by the children with such enthusiasm that the ambassador was surprised. It showed me how much they clamor that someone cares for them. Then they also draw hope. This applies to all Christians in the country. They need understanding and support. "

The way to support the Christians, "is a pilgrimage to the Holy Land: Come, come to us, eat and drink with us and pray with us," said the Patriarchal Vicar of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem.

Text: Giuseppe Nardi
 Image: Custody of the Holy Land
Trans: Tancred
Link to Katholisches...

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

German Papal Advisor: "No Mission to the Jews" --- Good Friday Prayers for the Jews "Problematic"

(Bonn / Rome) The German Fundamental Theologian  Gregor Maria Hoff is the new advisor to Pope Francis on Judaism. Last 20 February he was appointed Advisor of the Pontifical Commission for Religiosu Relations with Jews founded in 1974 by Pope Paul VI.. Hoff is Professor of Fundamental Theology and Ecumenical Theology at the Catholic Theological Faculty of Paris-Lodron University in Salzburg. He already belongs to the Sub-Commission for Religious Relations with Judaism of the German Bishops' Conference. This is  followed by the appointment  to Rome, where he takes the place of the Aachen theologians for Ecumenism, Hans Hermann Henrix. The preliminary discussions, said Hoff in an interview with the Deutsche Welle, had already begun in mid-2013, soon after the election of Pope Francis.
Gregor Maria Hoff Papal Consultor to Judaism
The Commission, which was created in the aftermath of the Conciliar Constitution of Nostra Aetate  in 1965, is concerned among other things, with the preparation of the Pope's trip to the Holy Land. Otherwise the task belongs, says Hoff,   to  the Commission, especially that of drawing "significant documents" that bring "expression to the positions of the church, the pope and the Vatican to Judaism".
One of the topics with which Hoff is concerned as the Fundamental Theologian and now as Pope Consultor, is the question of "whether the evangelization of the Jews may be an issue for the Church." Because, says Hoff apodictically : "The Catholic Church is operating no mission to the Jews." Pope Francis is supposed to have said, says Hoff, in his Apostolic Letter Gospel Gaudium   "emphasizes that God continues to act in the people of the Old Covenant, therefore that God in his covenant first chose the Jewish people of Israel." Other issues facing the theologian and ecumenicist concerns, "Trinity and monotheism."
2015: 50th Anniversary of Nostra Atetate - Francis "Rethinks" Good Friday "Hopefully"
The Roman Commission would have to deal with the  "fifty year anniversary" of Nostra Aetate, which is celebrated in 2015. This conciliar Constitution had "meant a very large incision". Because "since then the relations between the Catholic Church and Judaism have changed dramatically," said Hoff. This applies "especially in Germany," where the relations are  "very good and intense".
During the pontificate of Pope Benedict XVI. there were "even irritations", due to the reformulation of the Good Friday prayer for the traditional rite. Hoff holds the new version as "problematic" and "hopes" himself "that he thinks this phrase will be revised again by Pope Francis."  It doesn't mean it's a "real burden" in places.  The relationships were "so good" that one "such irritation can be settled  between us."
The "importance of the State of Israel's existence," because of the "theological significance of the country" imposed "election of the Jewish people" and the "question of the existence of the State of Palestine as well as the human rights issues"... "is a very sensitive matter, which touches part of the theological issues," said Hoff.
Pope to Visit Israel, not the Holy Land
Hoff in his interview with Deutsche Welle never spoke of  a trip of Pope Francis to the "Holy Land", but only about a "trip to Israel." On this trip "to Israel"  it will be shown, which accents the Pope "will set".  "Francis will certainly be good for the Catholic-Jewish relations," assured the German Fundamental Theologian and pope consultant. This would have been previously shown in his "very strong personal relations with the Jewish community in Buenos Aires".
Hoff believes that the Pope would bring in "Israel" a "certain" climate in the talks and will make a "programmatic" statement with the contents: "God continues to act in the people of the Old Covenant." 
Otherwise would the Pope in the Middle East issue take any particular position. He would then only be "lost in the nettles" said Hoff.
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: Strasbourg Cathedral
Trans: Tancred

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Pope Francis to Travel With Rabbi Skorka to the Holy Land on May 2014 -- Skorka Utters Nonsense About the Pope

Edit: basically, it looks like these reports by Jewish leaders, organizations, publications and some Catholic ones, are not credible.

(Rome) Pope Francis is to visit on the Holy Land 25th and 26th May, according to CNN reports, citing Israeli sources. He is not to do it with the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, as hoped by Constantine Opel, but with his Jewish friend, Rabbi Abraham Skorka. Skorka recently gave an interview about his days as a "personal guest" of the Pope in the guest house Santa Marta and utters some veritable "nonsense" about Pope Francis. Or not?

The visit of the Pope to the Holy Land, was recently confirmed by the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, Archbishop Fouad Twal for 2014, without so far announcing an exact date.

To the Holy Land Not with Patriarch Bartholomew, but with Rabbi Skorka

Pope Francis has long been already thinking about a trip to the Holy Land. Originally it was just after his election that he would visit together with the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople the holy sites of Jesus. A gesture in memory of the joint meeting in Jerusalem of Pope Paul VI. and Patriarch Athenagoras in 1964. An event that could be found in 2014 to take place exactly fifty years later, so the desire of Constantinople. A sign to make the special closeness between the Roman and Byzantine church could be made visible.

But this idea soon appeared in the background. Instead, Pope Francis looked around for a personal tour guide. He contacted his friend, the Argentine Rabbi Abraham Skorka, with whom he had worked as Archbishop of Buenos Aires on a conversation book, and invited him to accompany him on his journey to the Holy Land.

Skorka: "The Pope Has Celebrated the Beginning of Shabbat in the Vatican"

Skorka said in an interview for the Jewish monthly Pagine Ebraiche, was completely reproduced in the Osservatore Romano in its issue of 25-26th of November, which he gave, when he met at the Community of Sant'Egidio in Rome, as a "personal guest of Bergolio in Santa Maria":

"We were close for a few days, the three daily meals and have shared other moments both public and private. We talked about everything: about dialogue, but also about the journey that we will do together to Israel [...] Together we have celebrated the beginning of Shabbat, he was by my side when I recited the Kiddush and has broken challah, which Zion Evrony, the Israeli Ambassador, brought to the Holy See. They were unforgettable days and I think that they have a value that goes beyond the affection and confidence that has always connected us."

In the interview, Skorka always speaks of Pope Francis as Bergoglio. Likewise, he does not speak of a trip to the Holy Land, but of a trip to Israel, which is considered another territory in extent and possible destinations and represents a delicate question. In September, the President of the National Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, has invited the Pope to Palestine. On Monday, Pope Francis will receive Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will in audience.

The Skorka interview is interesting because of the unusually harsh criticism were expressed by the rabbi against the "World rabbbinate  in all its parts," which in his opinion "is going through a deep and destructive crisis"  both in "Israel" as well as "in all communities of the Diaspora."

  Skorka sees "Ideal Judaism" According to Rabbi Heschel, Who Worked on Nostra Aetate

 "The Church is in crisis, we are in a crisis," said Skorka who sees the "model of the ideal Judaism" which is "according to Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel." Heschel, born in 1907 in Warsaw and died in New York in 1972, who together with the German Cardinal Augustin Bea, was instrumental in the "Jewish declaration" of the Second Vatican Council in the Declaration Nostra Aetate concerned with the relationship of the Church to non-Christian religions. In 1971 he was called by Pope Paul VI. and received in audience.

Most Important Signal of this Pontificate? "The Rejection of Proselytism"

However, as Skorka draws a parallel between his proposals for a reform of Judaism and those of Pope Francis for the Catholic Church, the rabbi responds to the question about the new pope's "important signal": "I see great value in Bergoglio's comments against proselytism. It is a point on which he insists with a special emphasis and gets even more weight when we think of the evangelizing framework within which these statements were made."

Pope Francis wants to Only Introduce More Catholics to Faith"?

 Skorka has in an interview then that one must remember how evangelization was until recently connected inseparably with proselytism:

"But now, the Pope speaks of it only to introduce Catholics to the faith."

The rabbi emphasizes in an interview several times that Pope Francis rejects "proselytism". However, as the Vatican expert Sandro Magister draws attention, something is wrong in the end quite complete, when Skorka concludes with the statement: "Now, however, the Pope speaks of it to introduce only the Catholics to the faith."

L'Osservatore Romano Printed the "Nonsense" Without Batting an Eyelash?

"Only the Catholics?" Asks Sandro Magister. "The Osservatore Romano reprinted the interview without batting an eyelash. But how could Pope Francis ever say such nonsense?" asks the Vatican expert.

Overall, it is striking that since this pope took office Jewish representatives are often at the Vatican in and out. With the Skorka interview, who says he is reproducing a statement of Pope Francis, is in the last three months already the third controversial statement that was made ​​public after a meeting with the Pope by Jewish representatives (see the report What has Pope Francis really say as chairman of the World Jewish Congress - Violent polemics in Poland and the report Pope Francis Condemns Catholic protest against syncretistic "commemorative liturgy" in Buenos Aires A riddle? .

Text: Settimo Cielo / Giuseppe Nardi
 image: Settimo Cielo
Trans: Tancred
Link to Katholisches...

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Ossuary of the Granddaughter of Caiaphas Found in Israel

New evidence about the man who was connected to the Crucifixion of Jesus

Jerusalem ( In Israel an approximately 2000 year old bone case (Ossuar) from the surrounding precinct of some of the last high priests in Old Israel has been discovered. It bears the inscription "Miriam Daughter of Jeshua, son of Caiaphas, Priest of Maasiah of the House Imri". According to the Israeli Authority of Antiquities the case is authentic.

Caiaphas held the office of High Priest, which at the time was the highest office a Jew held under Roman occupation, and consequently concerned the Gospel story that Jesus had been crucified by the Romans. That he belonged to the priestly caste of the Maasiah, had not been known until now, said Theology Professor Rainer Riesner (Dortmund) about the idea. With the destruction of the Temple in 70 the time of the priests came to an end.

According to Riesner it shows the mention of the son of Jeshua [Jesus] and the grandaughter Mirjam (Maria) that these names were commonly occurring in that time. For that reason other bone cases with inscriptions bearing the name of Jesus can be brought into connection with Jesus Christ or can even be offered evidence against the physical resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Link to

Link to photo credit...