The new Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, Archbishop Fouad Twal, who was named to the post a few days ago by Pope Benedict XVI to replace retiring Patriarch Michel Sabbah, said this week, “Our people of the Holy Land, like all the peoples of the Middle East, continue to weep and suffer awaiting the hour of their liberation, the hour of their resurrection, because their way of the cross continues.”
In an article written for L’Osservatore Romano, reporter Sara Fornari quoted the new Patriarch who said, “Just as the distance between Golgotha and the empty tomb is short, so also we know that the distance between death and resurrection is short. Therefore there is no reason to be afraid. My faith is nourished by all of the spiritual, human and ecclesial treasures of this diocese,” he said.
During the traditional procession to the Holy Sepulcher on June 21, Patriarch Twal told the faithful, “After almost three years of waiting and preparation, I receive from the Holy Church the assignment of guiding our beloved Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, ‘Mother of all Churches.’ I thus inherit the challenges and pick up the different internal and external problems that have accumulated. I am filled with faith because I know I am not alone, I lean on the grace of God that has not been in vain in me and on the power of the Savior that is made manifest in my weakness.”
On Monday the new Patriarch celebrated Mass at the Basilica of the Holy Sepulcher and encouraged the faithful to remember that “Christ is head of our Diocese of Jerusalem. We are children of this land, we are children of the way of the Cross and of Golgotha, but at the same time we are children of the light, of joy and the resurrection.”
“We will be the voice that proclaims the coming happiness and peace, the voice that denounces and combats injustice, hatred and deception,” he said.