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Intervention of Rev. F. Pierbattista PIZZABALLA, O.F.M., Custos of the Holy Land (JERUSALEM)

Too often the pastoral perspective in the Holy Land starts from the situation rather than the vocation of the Church. Our vocation has as its starting point Acts 2:9 12. Then as now, the Church of Jerusalem was born and developed as a universal Church.
The holy places of the Holy Land are not only the stable point of the local Christian identity, but they are a living memory of the Incarnation. This did not happen only in time but also in space. To live in that space is our vocation.
Pilgrimages from all over the world and the presence of Jews and Muslims appear to the eyes of faith as the fulfillment, even if only a partial one, of the prophecy of the gathering of all peoples on Mount Zion (Is 2: 2 4).
Pilgrimages and the multi religious character of the Church of the Holy Land ask us to be always more outgoing, hospitable, open to others. Being a minority urges us to be more proactive. The institutions of the Church are a living witness of this proactive approach.
In the end it is up to we Christians in the Holy Land to remember our duty to preserve the Christian character of the Land of the Lord.

[00063-02.03] [IN041] [Original text: Italian]


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