A New Indian Catholic Community in the Holy Land
These days H.B. Fouad Twal has erected the mission with care of souls for Indian Catholics migrants living in the territories of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem.
This is a large Community of Indian Catholics, more than 2000 faithful, residing mainly in the cities of Tel Aviv, Herzliya, Rameh, Tiberia and Haifa, where they work in different sectors of housekeeping.
They come from over 28 major federal States and territories in India: from Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra, Goa, in the South, as well as from Maharashtra, Gujarat, and even from other countries situated in the Centre-East of the country. Until now they could participate at Holy Mass each Saturday in the Church of St. Antonio in Jaffa, the Holy Sepulchre, St. Saviour Church, in Jerusalem and in the Church of St. Joseph in Haifa. From now on, with the appointment of a priest as a chaplain and two of its chaplain and curates, all three are Franciscan fathers from India, the ecclesial life of these faithful may be much taken care of and better organized. The new mission which takes care of souls of Indian Catholics is in addition to personal parishes, chaplaincies and community of immigrants already in the Holy Land: for the faithful who speak English, German, French, for the African community, Austrian, Filipino, Polish, and Romanian.
The Jerusalem church wishes to express the promptness of the universal Church for migrants of every language and every people, faithful to its tradition. As stated so well by the Apostolic Letter Pastoralis Migratorum by Paolo VI (1969), which remains today, along with subsequent documents, a fundamental reference point: “the Church over the centuries has never ceased to help in every way those who, like Christ exile in Egypt with the family of Nazareth, were forced to emigrate in distant lands from their homelands”.