Palestinians celebrate Palm Sunday in Jerusalem

0

So many in the ‘West’ forget that the native Christians of Israel are almost all Palestinians.

The numbers of Christians in the ‘Holy Land’ though is getting smaller all the time. This is not because of tensions with their Muslim neighbors but on account of the Israeli Occupation of Palestine that affects Christian and Muslim alike. The only difference is that Christians tend to find it easier to emigrate.

Father Dave

Entry of Christ into Jerusalem (1320) by Pietro Lorenzetti

Entry of Christ into Jerusalem (1320) by Pietro Lorenzetti

source: www.haaretz.com…

Palestinians add national meaning to Palm Sunday in Jerusalem

By Amira Hass

A Christian pilgrim holds a Polish national flag as others hold palm fronds during the traditional Palm Sunday procession on the Mount of Olives overlooking Jerusalem’s old city, March 24, 2013. Photo by

The traditional Palm Sunday procession, marking the beginning of Easter week for Catholic and Protestant Christians, was tinged with Israeli-Palestinian politics in Jerusalem on Sunday.

Thousands of Christians gathered at noon in the courtyard of the Bethphage Greek Orthodox Church on the eastern slope of the Mount of Olives, where Jesus is said to have begun his entrance to Jerusalem five days before his crucifixion. Many carried palm or olive branches as they made their way to the Old City.

In Bethelehem, meanwhile, mostly Palestinian worshipers gathered in the Nativity Church in Bethlehem, traditional site of Jesus’ birth, clutching olive branches and bouquets as they sung in praise.

For years the Jerusalem procession was attended mainly by non-Palestinian pilgrims, but in recent years the Christian communities in the West Bank and Gaza have made their presence felt, encouraged to do so by the Palestine Liberation Organization.

This year the Palestinians stressed their presence by carrying placards bearing the name of an Arab community, the distance of the community from Jerusalem and the word “Palestine.” Many waved small Palestinian flags, marching among groups of pilgrims from the Philippines, Ethiopia, Germany, Italy and other countries.

One banner, which caused Hebrew and Arab speakers to smile sadly, was a large replica of an entrance permit ostensibly issued by the Civil Administration that read: “The purpose of the permit: Christian holiday. Valid: March 19-May 11. Name: The Palestinian People. ID number: 1948.”

PLO officials hoped the banner would raise awareness among Christians regarding the difficulties Christian Palestinians typically encounter when wishing to visit the holy sites in Jerusalem.

According to the PLO officials, in many communities only half the requests by some of the 50,000 Palestinian Christians were approved, at most.

The office of the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, however, said it rejected, on security grounds, only 192 of the 19,000 requests it received.

Filed under Uncategorized by on #

Leave a Comment

Fields marked by an asterisk (*) are required.

Human Verification * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.