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Posted in Patriarchal Vicars, Slide

Two new institutions in Nazareth

Two new institutions in Nazareth

NAZARETH – Christians of Nazareth welcome henceforth a new Secretariat for the Pastoral of Youth in Israel, as well as a community of Focolari.

The Christian community is a living body which might regress or progress.  That of Nazareth grows with the birth of two new structures: the creation of the Focolari community and the  institution of a new Secretariat for Youth Pastoral in  Israel.

Focolari in Nazareth

“At last!” exclaimed Mgr. Marcuzzo when he learnt from the Focolari Movement about the  creation of a community in Nazareth. Talks about creating a community dates back in the 80s, when Don Armando Bortolaso, sdb, brought a group of Focolari supporters  in Nazareth.

The new core of Focolari of Nazareth is composed of two consecrated, Edy Schopping, Brazilian, and Francesco Zurlo, Italian. Edy, with 10 years of experience in the Holy Land, expert in sociology and computer, runs the Guest house. He will be working with the Community Cançao Nova and helping in launching religious and cultural TV programs. Francesco, a doctor, is new in the Holy Land, nevertheless he has lots of experience in different countries and he has already found a job at the French Hospital of Nazareth.

They came to the City of the Annunciation on September 8th, 2015.  On November 2nd, the regional head of Focolari, Claudio Maina, introduced them officially to Mgr. Giacinto-Boulos Marcuzzo, Latin Patriarchal Vicar for Israel.  The latter has recognized in this Foundation the fulfillment of a wish long overdue. He expressed to the new community on behalf of the Patriarch and of the local Church, a warm “mabruk”.

 He prayed that their apostolic journeys be fruitful and that through their charisma “they will all be one”; and thus the culture of love will spread out.

Founded in Italy in 1943 by Chiara Lubich, Focolari movement is now scattered over 182 countries with more than 140 000 members and 2 millions of supporters.  Installed in the Holy Land since 1978,  the Movement now embraces seven communities  (in Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Amman, Haifa and now Nazareth) including some thirty consecrated and more than 700 members and supporters over all the Holy Land (124 in Palestine, 120 in Israel and 467 in Jordan).

The new Secretariat of the Pastoral of Youth (JEC, JUC, JOC) in Israel.

The Pastoral of the Youth has always existed in Israel, with groups of young people at the level of parishes, coordinated by the Patriarchal Vicar. It was only in 2014 that a priest was appointed in charge of this pastoral for Israel.  Abuna Tony Zghendi, sdb, is in charge of the pastoral of the youth in Israel since then. In other areas of the Holy Land, this mission had existed already since some fifty years.

Since 2014, Abuna Tony has created progressively a structure of coordination, with the help of heads of parish groups.  On November 6th, 2015, a group of 8 young people, accompanied by Abuna Tony and Sister Pia Rawashdeh, introduced themselves to Mgr. Giacinto Boulos Marcuzzo, Patriarchal Vicar for Israel, who, on behalf of the Patriarch, founded officially the first Secretariat of Young Christians in Israel.

The duties within the Secretariate of Youth are distributed by election, except for the general head, nominated by the Bishop, after consultations.

The Secretariate is composed of: Don Tony Zghendi, chaplain and right now general head; Rabie’ Bargout, secretary; Leem Abu Nassar, coordinator of activities; Mueen Mazzawi, treasurer; Hisham Farran, information & media; Sr Pia, Mariam Kurzum, Jihan Noufy and Maria Basha are members of the central committee.

Text by our correspondent in Nazareth

Photos : S.A.