Says It Will Aid Peace

JERUSALEM, JAN. 19, 2007 (Zenit.org).- A greater Christian presence in the Holy Land will aid peace efforts, concluded a meeting of bishops of North America and Europe.

The eight-day gathering was the sixth annual meeting of the Coordination of Episcopal Conferences in Support of the Church of the Holy Land, which seeks to encourage the commitment and solidarity of Catholics worldwide with this area.

In a final statement issued Thursday, the bishops also appealed to the Israeli government to implement the Fundamental Agreement that regulates its relations with the Catholic Church, and appealed to the Palestinians to reject violence and recognize the state of Israel.

"The Christian presence is a moderating influence and is essential to achieving peace," said the communiqué.

The note added: "As Pope Benedict XVI recently said, 'Christian witness will be of assistance and support for a future of peace and fraternity.'

"Christians are small in number but are an integral part of the people of Israel and the Palestinian Territories.

"Their rights must be guaranteed through recognition of equality and improved security, along with religious rights enshrined in law."

The prelates continued: "Clearly something new is needed to achieve justice and peace so that Israelis can move beyond fear, which drives counterproductive security policies that oppress the Palestinian people."

The Palestinians will then be able to "move beyond anger and despair, which drive violence that terrifies the Israeli people," the statement said.

The document appeals to Catholics "to pray for peace, come on pilgrimage and undertake other activities to support" the Church in the Holy Land.

In addition to the bishops of North America and Europe, representatives of Caritas Internationalis, Catholic Relief Services, Pax Christi International, the Knights of the Holy Sepulcher, the Pontifical Mission Society, Vatican Radio and the Holy Land Christian Ecumenical Foundation also attended.

Code: ZE07011930

Date: 2007-01-19

 


Teachings of Christ

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’" (Matthew 7:21-23 ESV)

Resurrection

Christ is risen from the dead * trampling down Death by death, * and upon those in the tombs bestowing life! (Troparion)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Although You descended into the tomb, O Immortal One, * You destroyed the power of Hades; * You arose as the victor, O Christ God, * proclaiming to the myrrh-bearing women: “Rejoice!” * And granting peace to Your Apostles, * O, You, Who gives resurrection to the fallen. (Kontakion)

Random Proverb

"He who commits adultery lacks sense; he who does it destroys himself." (Proverbs 6:32 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Why do you increase your bonds? Take hold of your life before your light grows dark and you seek help and do not find it. This life has been given to you for repentance; do not waste it in vain pursuits. 

St. Isaac the Syrian