VATICAN URGES CHRISTIANS TO REMAIN IN HOLY LAND - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

11/7/2002 - Vatican City

VATICAN URGES CHRISTIANS TO REMAIN IN HOLY LAND

The Vatican is giving 400-thousand dollars to Roman Catholic causes in Israel and the West Bank in an effort to improve life for Christians there and dissuade them from fleeing the Holy Land. The archbishop who heads the Vatican's charity arm says "the desire among many to leave" is understandable, but adds that holy sites would be endangered "if Christians abandoned them." The money will be divided among the Jerusalem Patriarchate, the Franciscan order, Caritas and various Catholic communities in the region. Holy Land tourism has fallen precipitously in the past two years of fighting, particularly after a standoff earlier this year between Israeli troops and Palestinians holed up in the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.
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