Community Forum

After the visit of His Holiness Pope Francis during the weekend, we have witnessed his popularity and the love amongst the people of Bethlehem and Jerusalem, even some of the Muslims, celebrated his visit.
Unfortunately, his visit to Jerusalem was not as smooth as the visit to Bethlehem. It was a disappointment for the Christian community in Jerusalem not to see the Pope and welcome him properly. Although the community was ready and eager to meet him—the Arab Catholic Scouts performed and the community all joyfully came out to greet him—the police and military were already there, preventing people from going closer.There were also arguments and riots caused by individuals and the military forces.
For that reason, we had a forum to gather the community together to share and reflect on this visit. Rev. Naim Ateek was the main speaker and facilitator.We started with a short Bible study and reflection on the texts, and a couple of hymns to get into the spirit.We then started the discussion of our impressions of the Pope’s visit, how important it was, how could we have done things differently, and what the role of the church should be.
It was a chance for the community to speak up, ask questions, and hear answers. It was important to get together, for the Christian community to shares their ideas and opinions.The attendees asked for more events and gatherings like these;they enjoyed the opportunity to sit together, where they could spiritually recharge and have their ideas heard.