Haifa (Agenzia Fides) - The third meeting of the working group set up to adequately prepare for the celebration of the extraordinary missionary Month in the Holy Land is scheduled for tomorrow, Saturday 31 August, at the Pontifical Mission Societies (PMS) office in Haifa . The meeting will be coordinated by Father Mikhael Abdo Abdo OCD, National Director of the PMS of the Holy Land, and will see the participation of about 20 representatives of the pastoral realities of the region. "In this phase of preparation" – says Fr. Mikhael to Agenzia Fides - we are interested above all in spreading information on the celebration of the extraordinary missionary Month and on the intent that animates it. Then we will gather from the representatives of the parishes and ecclesial bodies the proposals on the initiatives they intend to animate and promote in the various territories, and we will try to define the overall program, to be presented to the bishops". The National Director of the PMS of the Holy Land underlines the involvement of local communities in defining the initiatives that will mark the Missionary Month as an important element: "it is not", explains Father Abdo "to carry out a series of initiatives from above, but to bring out the missionary dimension that characterizes every ecclesial practice and dynamic".
On Sunday 18 August, a preparatory meeting was also held in Beit Jala, in the library of the patriarchal seminary in Jerusalem. The meeting was also attended by Bishop Giacinto Boulos Marcuzzo, Patriarchal Vicar for Jerusalem and Palestine of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, along with representatives of the pastoral realities of the areas of Jerusalem and Bethlehem. A leading role in raising awareness among local communities about the celebration of the Missionary Month is carried out by four Comboni Sisters. In that meeting, among other things, it was emphasized that during the Missionary Month the solemnity of Mary, Queen of Palestine (October 27). There was the proposal – report official organs of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem - to confer a missionary connotation to the feast that is celebrated that day at the Marian shrine of Deir Rafat (in the photo), in the city of Beit Shemesh - where every year the Catholics of the Holy Land honor Mary, "Queen of Palestine" with great devotion - with activities for young people, adults, schools, families and parishes. (GV) (Agenzia Fides, 30/8/2019)