Bishop Marcuzzo message to Fr. Bader on 25th anniversary of ordination

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Bishop Marcuzzo message to Fr. Bader on 25th anniversary of ordination

Amman-en.abouna.org

Following is the text of the message sent by Most Rev. Giacinto-Boulos Marcuzzo. Bishop and Patriarchal Vicar for Jerusalem and Palestine, to Fr. Dr. Rif'at Bader marking his 25th anniversary of priestly ordination, dated July 4, 2020:

Dear brother Abouna Rifaat,

Contrary to the first Arabic letter, I write this one in English on purpose, because other people who not necessarily read Arabic, could be interested (as I noticed for the first one) in reading and knowing the contents of our correspondence. It is a good opportunity, since there is nothing confidential, to give a good witness of respect for the priesthood, of what the priests do and of good relations between the clergy, especially in this very time. Again, Mabrouk wa alf Marbouk

I followed the holy mass of your beautiful jubilee. Very carefully, but not directly rather later, because in the same time I had a confirmation ceremony in Taybeh. I congratulate you for the beautiful words of gratitude and of general evaluation of your 25 years of pastoral, social and communications experience that you pronounce at the end on the mass. You touched many important points, but the point which I admired the most is when you spoke about the Pastoral Synod of the Catholic Churches in the Holy Land; and that you consider yourself “a synodal priest”. I would say even better: you can consider yourself a father, a brother and a son of the Synod! Because you contributed, in some way, to generate the Synod, you accompanied it and you were shaped by the spirit of that time and that ecclesial historical event. Short, by the Holy Spirit who leads the Church in his historical journey.

I would say even something more which could seem strange and incredible, but I am persuaded it is absolutely true: most of our problems of today (even the economic ones) come from the moment (2010-2011) in which we left the Spirit of the Synod. The regrettable decision in which we stopped the serial annual meetings of the Catholic Churches in the H.L., in which we were trying together to put into application, regularly step by step, the wonderful recommendations of the “General Pastoral Plan”; a precious fruit of the prayers, biblical readings, meetings, discussions and reflection of the many and small groups of faithful during several years. Short, since that moment, we were no more led by a synodal spirit in the pastoral initiatives, decisions and attitudes.

I am happy to see that you were deeply touched by that strong experience of the Spirit and of the Church, as myself and many other priests, consecrated and faithful were. And still now you are proud to say “I am a synodal priest”, with all the constructive pastoral consequences for the present and the future. The new phase of renewal and of restarting in the Latin Patriarchate - once the economic cleaning, sanitization and reforms are completed - should be done in the evangelical “Emmaus spirit” of that Pastoral Synod, with a special care for the always new development of the our dear Mother Church of Jerusalem, in the different and complementary countries of the Holy Land. Therefore, I see that the “signs of times” invite you to spend the second phase and the best years of your life (hopefully long!) in that exciting pastoral mission, in the spirit of Elijah, your dear prophet of Al-Wahadneh region (Jilaad Mountains).

Many greetings and wishes, in a brotherly union of reciprocal prayers with the blessing of Our Lord J.C. under the mantel of our Lady Mary (of Lourdes).

+ Giacinto-Boulos Marcuzzo

Latin Patriarchate. Jerusalem.

Sun, 07/05/2020 - 10:26
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