Patriarch of Jerusalem: New Evangelisation must be open to others

2012-10-13 Vatican Radio

(Vatican Radio) The Thirteenth General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops continues Saturday, with interventions from Bishops from around the world.

Covering the Synod for Vatican Radio, Philippa Hitchen spoke with Patriarch Faoud Twal about his message for the assembled Bishops. He said that, in a certain way, the New Evangelisation must return to its roots in the Church of Jerusalem: “I mention in my intervention that the whole thing started in Jerusalem, from Jerusalem, and really to be a good and genuine and efficient new evangelisation we must go back to the first community. Any big event in the Church must go back to Jerusalem, start with Jerusalem, and really start again with Jerusalem to be a genuine and a good one.”

Patriarch Twal says that he would encourage his fellow Bishops to visit the Holy Land with their seminarians, their priests and their communities. “Come to see what we call the living stones, and encourage us, share with us our fears, our joys, our aspiration. Share with us the prayer, we need the prayer, to come back to prayer.”

He said that, despite the difficulties for Christians in the Middle East, it was important for the community to move beyond its own boundaries. “Any good faith and evangelism must be open to others with more bridges and less walls.”

Patriarch Twal said, “Now in the Middle East, when we see all the problems that we are living, I can see other Christians, and we Pastors with them, we are a little bit afraid.” But that cannot be an excuse for Christians to be closed within themselves. “That’s why our attention, our care is how to get around our small flock, how to keep it, how to protect it. It is something, just gathering our people instead to have the courage to get outside, to preach outside.”

Listen to the interview of Philippa Hitchen with the Latin Patriarch Faoud Twal of Jerusalem: