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Welcome to the Friends of the Holy Land..... an introduction Catenian Association Wharfedale Circle.

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Presentation on theme: "Welcome to the Friends of the Holy Land..... an introduction Catenian Association Wharfedale Circle."— Presentation transcript:

1 Welcome to the Friends of the Holy Land..... an introduction Catenian Association Wharfedale Circle

2 The Next Few Minutes Background to the Holy Land The challenges for the Christians in the Holy Land The FHL – background and objectives FHL projects & humanitarian aid How you can help Questions

3 The Holy Land

4 Jerusalem (Old City)

5 Jerusalem

6 Bethlehem –the Church of the Nativity

7 Bethlehem 2011

8 Christian Population 340,000 Christians in the region Less than 2% Bethlehem - reduced from 80% to 20% Jerusalem - 400,000 Jews - 400,000 Muslims - 10,000 Christians The Christian population is declining

9 What are the challenges for the Christians in the Holy Land? Restricted ability to travel 28% unemployment Financial plight – below the poverty line Those remaining find it difficult to make a living Many are moving away Lack of awareness of their difficulties

10 What needs to be done? Strengthen their position to keep Christianity in the Holy Land Create an environment where our Christian brothers & sisters can be self sufficient Give them a reason to stay in the Holy Land

11 What do they need? Support –Prayers –Visits (pilgrimages) –Financial support (Humanitarian aid, supporting projects, facilitating the export of goods) Self Respect –Outlets for what they produce –To be self sufficient/able to work Greater Awareness –Of their problems

12 Hence The Friends of the Holy Land A Charity established in England & Wales based on Parish Groups of Friends working together to support the Christian Community in the Holy Land

13 How did we get here? Concept started with pilgrimages to the Holy Land from 2000 onwards Consultation with, and involvement of, the Bishops’ Conference of England & Wales Registered as a Charity in 2009 Patrons –The Most Rev. Vincent Nichols –The Most Rev. Patrick Kelly –The Most Rev. Bernard Longley

14 Objectives of the FHL For the Christian Community in the Holy Land To raise awareness of the difficulties they are facing To encourage and to provide for prayers to be offered for their intentions To give financial support to aid their well- being

15 How do we achieve our objectives? Through FHL Parish Groups –Based on the SVP model Through a National Structure –Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England & Wales –National FHL Office and National Committee –Supporting FHL Parish Groups –Parish Clergy –“Friends”

16 What FHL Parish Groups do Support objectives of awareness, prayer and providing financial support. Meet monthly with guideline agenda Run fund raising events Spread the word through pulpit presentations Sell olive wood and other items made in the Holy Land, providing income & employment Support Projects & the “Widows Mite Fund” Encourage pilgrimage to the Holy Land

17 Range of FHL Projects House repair, providing local employment Distribution of blankets, heaters, medicines, food parcels School projects Establishment & support of a Day Care Centre – St. Martha’s House “Care & Repair” programme for families

18 More FHL Projects Provision of transport for the elderly and infirm Sponsor students through their education at School or University Fund Parish/community activities ie. summer schools/youth clubs Fund small self-help projects

19 Projects/Humanitarian Aid

20

21 “I have never got a present on Christmas day and now I did. Thanks God after seventy years I have someone who cares for me” “I hope that God will increase the Christians all over the world and keep the Christians of the Holy Land in their Land forever” “Now that I feel there is a loving God in the sky” “My illness is gone in this moment, thank you so much” “May God help them as they helped us”

22 On the Ground Support and Contacts Centrally through the Latin Patriarchate Direct through Parish Priests Through the coordination of three Parishes Through personal contacts on the ground

23 Support an FHL Group in your Parish Request a pulpit presentation. Arrange a meeting Read our brochure/newsletter. Visit our website Complete a ‘friends’ registration form to keep you informed of progress, locally and nationally Become an “ambassador” for the FHL Make your friends & family aware of the FHL Consider joining the next Catenian Pilgrimage to the Holy Land : March Pray and donate as much as you are able How can you help ?

24 Opportunities to donate to the FHL Complete a donation form Consider planned giving through a regular standing order Gift aid if you are a UK tax payer Collect small change in your own olive wood crib box Request donations to the FHL in lieu of presents at your next celebration! Provide a legacy to the FHL in your Will

25 Your FHL Contacts National Chairman – Dr. Michael Whelan National Vice Chairman – Peter Rand Honorary Secretary – Peter Horgan FHL General Manager – Sean Higgins 2 Station Road, Kenilworth, Warks. CV8 1FP Telephone Website

26 Thank you Any questions?


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