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Holy Land Commissary Extends Gratitude to Diocese

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The Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge received a letter of gratitude from Fr. Jeremy Harrington, OFM, Commissary of the Holy Land, for the generous contribution given by the faithful in the Diocese of Raleigh to the 2012 Pontifical Good Friday Collection. The amount of the Collection totaled $97,569.20.

In his letter, Fr. Harrington noted the financial contribution will be used for several important causes, including support of the small Christian community of 150,000 people currently living in the Holy Land. Many Christians in the Holy Land depend on the collection for their lives.

Due to severe political and economic hardships, an estimated 500 Christian families leave the Holy Land each year. This steady emigration suggests that one day the Christian community and the Christian church may cease to exist in this part of the world. 

Since 1209, the Holy Land Franciscans have been charged with preserving Christian places, providing pastoral care and serving the needy in the Holy Land. Their tasks include maintaining and caring for the shrines and chapels, operating schools, caring for the poor by providing housing and health care, pastoral ministry, providing spiritual direction for pilgrims, and keeping Christianity alive.

Through the Pontifical Good Friday Collection, Christians throughout the world are united in a special way to the land that was made holy by God’s plan.