The human situation of migrants in the Holy Land is critical and the Order of the Holy Sepulchre is committed to supporting them through the activities and facilities offered by the Saint James Vicariate for Hebrew speaking Catholics. In fact, more than 60,000 migrants are Catholics and they represent an important part of the face the Catholic Church has and will have in Israel. Legal issues, poverty, the need to work but nowhere to leave children, contribute to creating a complex framework pushing parents to put their children into dangerous “baby warehouses” (discover more about it here on the right).
The Order of the Holy Sepulchre wishes these children may have a start in life that will allow them to lead lives devoid of suffering and that will promote their right to flourish as human beings. In order to make that happen we support the promotion of day care units that guarantee an acceptable environment for babies from the age of three months to three years. At present 90 babies are being looked after daily, giving these children a chance in life but also applying a model of healthy child care that can be adopted by others. We also promote after-school programs where more grown-up children can receive adequate help in coping with the load at school and also providing a safe haven, where children can come when their parents are still at work.
This Christmas the Grand Master Cardinal Edwin O’Brien wants to remind us of all the activities that the Order supports on behalf of these very young migrants so that all our members may celebrate Christmas in communion with these children who today give an African or Asian face to the Baby Jesus, thus well representing the universality of the Church. Through your regular contributions, each year the Grand Magisterium of the Order is able to send a sum of money to support these facilities for migrant children and thus support their whole families.
(December 21, 2016)