Palestinian Poultry Project
Students at the Hope Secondary School in the Palestinian town of Beit Jala raise hens that lay eggs which are sold to raise lunch money for the school.
Two thousand hens in four hen houses produce many a dozen grade A, extra-large eggs each day. People come from neighboring towns and villages to buy them. Although the project involves the entire school, some students earn extra money mopping up after the busy birds.
The Hope School, which was founded by the Mennonites in 1961, is unique not only because of its thriving poultry industry but also because Christian and Muslim students live, pray and study together. Hope School is the only university preparatory and commercial school in the West Bank.
Out and About
On 11 March, Brother David Carroll, F.S.C., Assistant to the Secretary General, spoke to the Catholic Study Group, a Manhattan-based group of concerned Catholics, about the Christians of the Holy Land.
Brother David and Msgr. Robert L. Stern, Secretary General, spoke about the current state of affairs in the Holy Land at the annual meeting and investiture of the North Central Lieutenancy of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, held in Indianapolis from 25 to 27 April.
Msgr. Stern briefed the Toronto Lieutenancy on recent developments in the lives of the churches and peoples of the Holy Land at the lieutenancy’s annual meeting and investiture, held in Toronto from 2 to 4 May.
Alexei II Counsels Priests
Speaking at a winter meeting of the diocesan clergy of Moscow, Alexei II, the Russian Orthodox Patriarch of Moscow, said that a priest “has no right to forget that ‘God is love’ and that ‘he who abides in love abides in God.’
“…Very patient and experienced priests should hear the confessions of newcomers,” the Patriarch advised. Sermons, he said, should be delivered every day, “and, if a pastor lacks experience or a gift for it, there is nothing shameful in reacting aloud from one of the Orthodox books that are being published…in some parishes.”
Warning Moscow’s priests “not to push away those who are seeking the way to church [by] boldness, tiredness, shortness of temper, rudeness, lack of interest or attention,” Patriarch Alexei urged his priests to welcome all people into their churches.
Rest in Peace
The Eastern Catholic churches have lost three leaders. On 16 March, the Maronite Archbishop of Aleppo, Beroea and Halab, Pierre Callaos, died. The Maronite Archbishop of Tripoli in Lebanon, Tarabulus, Gabriel Toubia, was called to the Lord on 6 April, as was Lawrence Mar Ephraem, the first Syro-Malankara Catholic Bishop of Marthandom, India, on 7 April.
Prayers from India
“It gives me a lot of pleasure and peace of mind that I could be with the poorest of poor and their ministers,” writes Mar Joseph Kundukulam, retired Syro-Malabar Catholic Archbishop of Trichur, in a recent letter from his new residence at St. Christina’s Home in Pullazhy, a suburb of Trichur.
Staffed by the Nirmala Dasi Sisters, a community established in 1971 by Mar Joseph, St. Christina’s Home serves unwed mothers and their children, who would otherwise have nowhere to live.
“In my retired life, I take much time to engage myself to the cause for the poor,” Mar Joseph also writes. “I get much time to pray and I promise to keep you and your intentions in my prayers.”
In the Works
As an expression of appreciation, Father Boban Zachariah, a priest of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Archdiocese of Trivandrum, has offered to produce a 30-minute video on the work of CNEWA-PMP as his graduate thesis.
Father Boban, who was awarded an academic scholarship from CNEWA, is completing a Master’s Degree in television production and technology at Brooklyn College. He is working to enhance the Trivandrum archdiocesan communication center and institute, Suvartha Communications.
Cardinal OConnor Receives Award
John Cardinal O’Connor, Archbishop of New York and President of CNEWA, received America’s Democratic Legacy Award from the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith at a banquet in New York City on 16 April.