CCCB President's Letter to the Bishops of Canada: Good Friday Collection for the Holy Land

Wednesday, March 17 2004

My dear Brother Bishops:

Recently you should have received a copy of the letter from His Eminence Patriarch Ignace Moussa I Cardinal Daoud, Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, concerning the 2004 Collection for the Holy Land (Prot N. 1/2004). Once again, he writes urging local Churches to show their solidarity with Christians in the Holy Land through their prayers and financial support.

During the month of January 2004, the then General Secretary Msgr. Peter Schonenbach and I made a visit to the Holy Land where, together with other American and European Bishops, we discussed the situation of Christians with members of the Assembly of Catholic Ordinaries of the Holy Land. As Cardinal Daoud mentions in his letter, citing the Holy Father, “the Holy Land continues to be an arena of conflicts and violence and Catholic communities present there suffer and need support and assistance in their many necessities.”

The Christian presence in the Holy Land becomes more precarious each year as people leave their homeland to live in peace and dignity. The Good Friday Collection for the Holy Land is one of the practical ways which we have at our disposal to assist them, since unemployment is high with the decrease in the number of pilgrims. Although there are many demands made on our resources, I believe this is certainly one which calls for our solidarity and generous support.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

+ Brendan M. O’Brien
Archbishop of St. John’s
Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops

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