Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

9/2/2014 (8 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Father Jorge Hernandez had special meeting with Pope

Father Jorge Hernandez, the Gaza Strip's sole Catholic parish met with Pope Francis at the Vatican, thanking him for his support of those suffering in the war-torn territory. Speaking to Vatican Radio, the 36-year-old priest says that the Pope continued to offer his prayers and encouragement.

Father Hernandez and three Missionaries of Charity were the only religious left at Holy Family Church during a 50-day battle between Israeli forces and Hamas militants.

Father Hernandez and three Missionaries of Charity were the only religious left at Holy Family Church during a 50-day battle between Israeli forces and Hamas militants.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

9/2/2014 (8 months ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: Gaza, Father Hernandez, Pope Francis, Catholic minority


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Hernandez said that the Pope told him that "the Gospel demands the sacrifices that Jesus Christ asks of every one of us, everywhere. It's up to you to give witness to Jesus Christ there, in the land that saw him suffer, that saw him die, that also saw him, however, come back from the dead. So, be strong, have courage, keep going!"
 
Like the Pope, Father Hernandez is likewise from Argentina. He had a 45-minute private meeting with the Pope Francis on August 29, just days after the start of a truce between Israel and Hamas.

SAVE Iraqi Christians from Genocide --

Father Hernandez and three Missionaries of Charity were the only religious left at Holy Family Church during a 50-day battle between Israeli forces and Hamas militants.

The priest and three religious women elected to stay behind in the midst of the heaviest rocket fire in order to care for 29 severely disabled children and nine elderly women. The four of them later opened up the parish school to shelter some 1,200 Palestinians who fled their homes during the airstrikes.

Father Hernandez told Vatican Radio how important Francis's support was during the ordeal.

"He even sent us an email that we immediately translated into Arabic, and that's how it was given to the whole Christian community, which was enormously grateful," the priest said.

"A thought like that at such a time is a huge consolation, a relief - and now the fact that he called us for a personal meeting with him, to let us understand, to feel his closeness, his words, his encouragement to be the salt of the earth in Gaza."

Hernandez says that the Pope is aware of "the life lived in pain" by the small Catholic minority in Gaza. There are only 136 Catholics out of two million, mostly Muslim, inhabitants. Another 1,300 people are part of the Christian Orthodox traditions.

The fact that the Pope "won over people's hearts, put in a good word for both states was an enormous grace for us."

Hernandez thanked everyone for their prayers and for all the notes, calls and concrete assistance, especially from Caritas Internationalis.

He said he hoped the ceasefire would hold and last "forever . All you have to do is see the suffering on both sides," he said, because all sides "will have to pay the consequences" of conflict in different ways.

"Nobody wins with war," he said. "Nobody comes out ahead. Everybody loses.

"Let's hope that God grants us the strength needed to start all over again."

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for May 2015
Universal:
That, rejecting the culture of indifference, we may care for our neighbours who suffer, especially the sick and the poor.
Evangelization: That Mary's intercession may help Christians in secularized cultures be ready to proclaim Jesus.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Middle East

Battle against the Islamic State draws Kurdish women to combat frontlines Watch

Image of Forced to cut ties with their families back home, the women fighters come from all corners of the Kurdish region that spans Syria, Turkey, Iran and Iraq.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The war against the Islamic State has reached the point where all available labor must draw upon the female population as well. Kurdish forces have been fighting the Islamic State since the al-Qaeda offshoot captured large tracts of land in Iraq and Syria. ... continue reading


ISIS shocks with horrific images of jihadi babies Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

ISIS continues to shock the world every day with horrible images of executions. However, the terrorist group's latest photographs do not display death; they are the picture of life. Infant children are posed with ISIS garb and dangerous weapons. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


ISIS demands unbelievable amount of money for return of 230 Christians Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

ISIS demands $23 million for return of the 230 Assyrian Christian hostages they captured in February. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Although some of the hostages were released shortly after the attack on February 25, 230 are still missing, including 84 women and ... continue reading


Iran foreign minister highly confident that U.S. Congress cannot stop Obama Watch

Image of In a show of self-confidence, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said that all sanctions against his nation would be lifted from his country - and all U.S. lawmakers will be unable to stop it.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In a show of self-confidence, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said that all sanctions against his nation would be lifted from his country - and all U.S. lawmakers will be unable to stop it. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Speaking to a New ... continue reading


Iranian General says U.S. carried out 9/11 attacks in order to invade Middle East Watch

Image of In a TV interview, Brigadier-General Ahmad Reza Pourdestan says the U.S. planned and carried out the attacks as a pretext for invading Middle Eastern countries.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In the wake of the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 9, 2001 - known as 9/11, many outrageous conspiracy theories were formulated that run the paranoid gamut. An Iranian military official has now offered one of the most bizarre and unsettling ... continue reading


ISIS does the unexpected in latest shocking execution images Watch

Image of The ISIS militants are photographed hugging the blindfolded accused gay men.

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

New images claim to show ISIS militants showing compassion. Two accused gay men were set to be stoned to death, however, prior to the stoning, their executioners did something strange and unexpected. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The ISIS fighters were ... continue reading


White House admits fault: Two hostages accidentally killed in U.S. drone strike Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A U.S. counterterrorism operation targeting an al Qaeda compound in January accidentally killed two innocent hostages, including one American. President Barack Obama, making the announcement this week confirmed that a U.S. military drone that targeted the ... continue reading


U.S. warships monitoring Iranian traffic off coast of Yemen Watch

Image of U.S. President Barack Obama told reporters that America has been clear in its messages to Tehran on sending weapons to Houthi rebels inside Yemen.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The United States has deployed warships to Yemen in order to monitor nearby Iranian vessels. Officials say this gives America "options" on how it could react to Iran's behavior in the region. Ships traveling from Iran could be trafficking arms to Houthi rebels. ... continue reading


Tensions mount between U.S. and Iran over nuclear talks, Yemen Watch

Image of Iran's annual Army Day military parade showcased new weapon systems and banners that read

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

On April 18 Iran marked its national Army Day with a military parade with intent to intimidate and threaten the west, especially the U.S. and Israel, showcasing new weapons systems and even a truck which carried a large banner that read "Death to Israel." LOS ... continue reading


ISIS takes over government functions: Birth certificates, vaccinations, 'till death do us part... Watch

Image of Unlike the Taliban, ISIS allows vaccinations against polio. While in the grip of Islamist State, polio vaccinations continue unabated throughout Iraq.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Islamic State, as in the nightmarish dictatorial regimes of past and present - Hitler's Germany, Mussolini's Italy and present day North Korea have massive bureaucratic systems in order to oppress the citizen on every level. A peek into the brutal totalitarian ... continue reading


All Middle East News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 14:19-28
19 Then some Jews arrived from Antioch and Iconium ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 145:10-11, 12-13, 21
10 All your creatures shall thank you, Yahweh, and ... Read More

Gospel, John 14:27-31
27 Peace I bequeath to you, my own peace I give you, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 5th, 2015 Image

St. Hilary of Arles
May 5: Bishop of Arles, France, and friend and relative of St. ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter