Dear Brothers and Sisters,
When the three wise men heard the Good News of Jesus’ birth, they traveled a great distance to worship him,
“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men” (Luke 2:14).
The shepherds who heard those words hurried from their nearby pastures to where Baby Jesus, wrapped in swaddling clothes, was lying in a manger. All paid homage to Him there. They saw the Infant Jesus for the first Christmas and were among the first to know the great gift God had given the world. They shared that story with their families, down the generations, to the Christians who live in the Holy Land today, in Bethlehem so near to that humble manger. Donate here
We remember the Christmas story every year, dutifully reciting it, sharing gifts and food with one another, singing carols, and putting up lights. Unfortunately, we often forget the Palestinian Christians who have preserved the Good News for us, who have continued our traditions and maintained our holiest sites, including the Church of the Nativity. We overlook that they are disappearing from the Holy Land, that while our lights are bright, Bethlehem is dark as many Christians have already fled.
Palestinians who have remained constantly face the consequences of occupation. They are surrounded by a separation wall fitted with guard towers. They cannot travel without passing through military checkpoints, and are frequently denied entry. Their lands are seized, their water is dried up, and their fathers and sons are imprisoned without due process. Unrest has been escalating, blood is spilled every day, and Christian sites have been targeted for attack, such as the recently burned Church of the Multiplication of Loaves and Fish in Galilee. If Mary and Joseph had to make their journey today, they would likely not reach Bethlehem. Donate here
Please remember Palestinians this Christmas season, remember the words of St. Paul:
“If one part suffers, every part suffers with it.” 1 Corinthians 12:26a
Let us remember Jesus as the first Palestinian refugee, representing over a million Palestinian Christians who are forced to live outside of the Holy Land. At the same time, let us remember the 1% Christians who keep the faith and remain steadfast in the Holy Land amid rising conflict. Donate here
The message of Christ is for people of all faiths and nations. It is a message of boundless hope and peace. The dark days of suffering will end, ushering a blissful and lasting harmony.
Please join us in being instruments of peace for our Christian brothers and sisters in the Holy Land! Share your resources in support of one or more of our HCEF PROGRAMS!
Your tax-deductible support in the amount of $500, $125, $25, or whatever you can afford yields life-changing results.
“Let us work together to replace despair with HOPE,
fear with HUMAN SECURITY, and humiliation with DIGNITY”.
God Bless you and your family this Christmas season. May you always remember that no act is too great for our Lord.
Rateb Y. Rabie, KCHS