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A “full” liturgy in Ain Arik

A “full” liturgy in Ain Arik


AIN ARIK – On Sunday, May 29, 2016, was a big celebration in the Latin parish of the Annunciation in Ain Arik.  Bishop William Shomali, Patriarchal Vicar for Jerusalem and Palestine was the main celebrant of the Sunday Mass:  a girl was baptized, three children received First Communion and six others were conferred the Sacrament of Confirmation.

Bishop Shomali emphasized that it is “A full and all-embracing liturgy!”  “In this Eucharist, as we remember the Paschal Mystery, we administer the three most important sacraments for every Christian: Baptism, Communion and Confirmation; completing the process of initiation into the Catholic community.  What a great gift!”

The faithful filled the Church on this special occasion as celebrations for the administration of the Sacraments happen every two years in Ain Arik because the Latin community is small.

The liturgy is prepared and celebrated with great care by the parishioners and especially the children.

Brother Benedetto of the Little Family of the Annunciation, who has served this parish for many years, shared that “this love for the liturgy has blossomed not long ago.  The impetus has been the youth group who actively gather every week to prepare for the Eucharist, in serving during Mass and the readings. Thanks to this dedicated group of mainly young girls for their work and commitment to animate the liturgy, their efforts are bearing much fruit.  We the Brothers and Sisters are very happy and we appreciate their help.”

Bishop Shomali, in a poignant homily, spoke with the children and together looked into Scriptures to know and understand the Gifts of the Holy Spirit, with the graces and new life brought upon those who receive Holy Communion.

The festivities continued after the Mass as everyone exchanged greetings.  The parish priest, Father Giovanni Cinti, known to everyone as Abouna Hanna, invited Bishop Shomali and the two seminarians of the Latin Patriarchate from Beit Jala, guests from Jerusalem, and those who did the sacramental preparations for the children, to share in the meal at the Sisters home.  Six young people from the parish will participate in the World Youth Day in Krakow, Poland this summer.

Article and pictures by Andres Bergamini