Every year on Good Friday, a collection is taken up in Catholic Churches to support the work of the Franciscans working in the Holy Land. Christians there rely heavily on the help that comes to them from this worldwide collection.
During Holy Week, the Gospel readings come to life in a special way as we gather to celebrate the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. The readings remind us of our special connection to the land where this great story unfolded. Supporting the church in the Holy Land is an historic mission. Since the time of St. Paul, Christians worldwide have understood the responsibility to support the land where Jesus walked.
It has never been easy to be a Christian in the Holy Land. In these challenging times in the Middle East, Christians are experiencing unique hardships. We have an opportunity to help them through the Pontifical Good Friday Collection. Christians in the Holy Land face special challenges – many of which we hear about in the daily news. The political, religious and military challenges in the Holy Land are more complex than ever. Supporting the Pontifical Good Friday Collection offers hope to the Holy Land Christians.
Who are these Christians? Christians living in the Holy Land today are descendants of those who first believed and lived the Christian faith. It is important that Christians continue to live, work and pray in the Holy Land. The Pontifical Good Friday Collection offers all Catholics an opportunity to express their solidarity with Christians in the Holy Land. A donation to the Holy Father’s annual appeal is a direct way to make a difference in the lives of those caught up in war, violence and instability in this region. The pandemic hit particularly hard the Christians in the Holy Land. Most of them depend on pilgrimages to work. In these times of crisis, the Pontifical Good Friday Collection is also necessary to meet the basic needs of the People of God still living in this Land where the Church was born.
What has been accomplished? Last year’s Pontifical Good Friday Collection:
- Supported 23 parishes and three academic institutions
- Provided a home for 30 children from homes facing domestic violence
- Offered 400 scholarships for high school and university education
- Helped keep schools open for over 10,000 pre-K through grade 12 students
- Supported 120 men preparing to be priests or brothers
- Restored and maintained 1000+ houses/apartments for Christian families
- Offered assistance at senior care facilities in Bethlehem and Nazareth
- Created 1,200 jobs in the Holy Land for Christians
- Preserved 65 shrines connected with the life of Jesus and the prophets
Thank you for supporting the Pontifical Good Friday Collection, as encouraged by Pope Francis. Through the Pontifical Good Friday Collection, you join with Catholics around the world to stand in solidarity with the Church in the Holy Land, and you become an instrument of peace in a troubled land.
For more information about Christians in the Holy Land, visit www.myfranciscan.org/good-friday.