Jerusalem (Agenzia Fides) - As of today, 10 September to Thursday, September 19, the relics of St. John Bosco will make a long pilgrimage in many places of Holy Land, before returning to Italy at the end of the tour that since 2009 has travelled around the world.
It will be the Patriarch of Jerusalem of the Latins Fouad Twal to welcome the relics of the saint tonight at 6 p.m., at the Jaffa Gate. The Patriarch invited all the faithful of the diocese to attend the event, which will include the recitation of Vespers at the Co-Cathedral of the Latin Patriarchate. In the coming days the relics will stop at numerous churches of Bethlehem, Beit Jala, Nazareth, Haifa, Beit Jemal and Jaffa, before returning to Jerusalem. In each place, the relics will be accompanied and celebrated with Eucharistic liturgies, processions, vigils, moments of worship. On Wednesday 11, the relics, in the passage from Jerusalem to Bethlehem, will cross the checkpoint at Rachel's Tomb and will also stop at the Baby Caritas Hospital, Children's Hospital, in proximity of the separation wall erected by the Israeli authorities. The next day, the relics will make a pilgrimage to the house of the Salesians in the valley of Cremisan, adjacent to the land confiscated by Israel to continue the construction of the Separation Wall. Such confiscation and the environmental destruction - are at the center of a long legal dispute between the local Palestinian peoples and the Israeli authorities. "Don Bosco" notes to Fides Agency Bishop William Shomali, Patriarchal Vicar of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem "at the end of his life wanted to make a trip to Holy Land. But he was unable to fulfill his wish because of health conditions. Now this desire comes in a different way, through his relics and so he keeps his promise. In this period that we are living, we need him. Now that throughout the Middle East - in Holy Land, Egypt, Iraq and Syria, all Countries where many Salesians of Don Bosco work - we experience a dramatic situation, never seen before, we need him and all the saints. We ask everyone for their strong intercession". (GV) (Agenzia Fides 10/09/2013)