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     Home > Synod >  2010-10-17 13:39:13
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Intervention of Mr. Husam J. WAHHAB, President, Catholic Action of Bethlehem (PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES), auditor

As a Christian witness in the Holy Land, I see that the Christian presence in the Holy Land is essential and gives life to the holy places. With this presence, we are facing many difficulties that put the Christian presence on the stake. Part of these difficulties is the church division, emigration, isolation, political instability, and occupation.
Beside the church division and emigration we should be careful to the dangerous of the possible elimination of the Palestinian Christian from his society. Therefore, our preoccupation with this question aims in the first instance to avoid the any self preoccupation and isolation so that the Palestinian Christian will not feel unjustly treated. Accordingly, we seek to stand by him in order
to work and to feel that he is all part of his society.
The concept of separation between religion and state in the Middle East does not exist since many of the laws and regulations are inspired by religion. Our efforts should be concentrated to influence regulators to respect the privacy of the Christian citizens in the society.
The Christian society appreciates the work of the church over the past years and the continuous support of the local Christian institutions. In addition, the surrounding Arab society do highly appreciate the presence of Christian institutes especially Catholic Schools, Bethlehem University, hospitals which builds bridges of understanding and respect between the Muslims and Christians that creates a mutual respect between each another.
Bishops, priests, and lay people should work towards creating an atmosphere that promotes a culture of peace and justice. This atmosphere of peace and justice will encourage the future generation of young people to stay in their own lands.
It is vital to the Church to work with lay people in the field of formation, especially with children and youth toward unity with all vocations to grow together in communion. In this perspective the Catholic Action and other kinds of institutions are helpful to work by the help of lay people and church in order to promote unity and feeling of internal peace. Church should open avenues of international relationships with other world churches and communities to promote pilgrimage to the holy land that creates more solidarity towards the Christian presence.
Our goal is to continue our presence in the Middle East and develop our programs in a way that attracts more and more people to be witnesses to our Lord Jesus and to Spread the Word of God in our community and to live our Christian life in pride in order to be a living example to our future generation.

[00157-02.02] [UD019] [Original text: English]


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