There is widespread unease but no certainty that situation of Christians will deteriorate in the Palestinian territories. Church authorities will seek reconfirmation of the February 15, 2000, Basic Agreement between the Holy See and the Palestine Liberation Organisation that guarantees religious freedom, upholds established Church rights and protects the Holy Sites.
?A disaster, Hamas?s victory is a disaster for Christians,? said an agitated K. M., a Palestinian Christian from Bethlehem after poll results from yesterday?s elections showed the Islamist party gaining 77 of the 132 seats in the new Palestinian legislative council.
AsiaNews, Jan 28, 2006
January 29, 20063542 reads
January 05, 20064513 readsTwo thousand years after Jesus came to Taybeh, the dwindling population of this tiny West Bank community is determined to survive and pass on to future generations their unique heritage: the last all-Christian village in the Holy Land.
The villagers of Taybeh are fiercely proud of their Christian heritage. In the entire Holy Land, there are only about 200,000 Christians, less than 2 percent of the population -- 130,000 in Israel and 70,000 in the West Bank and Gaza. Other Christian towns such as Bethlehem and Ramallah now have Muslim majorities, but by strict tradition, only Christians may live in Taybeh or buy property there.
San Fransisco Chronicle, Dec 25, 2005
December 20, 20053575 readsIf pilgrims worshipping in the Church of the Nativity look up at the roof, they will see a battlefield threatening the future of one of Christendom's most holy sites.
Squabbling over crucial roof repairs between the three Christian communities who share custodianship of Jesus's birthplace is endangering the 1,500-year-old basilica.
By Tim Butcher, The Telegraph
October 23, 20053764 readsDirector and President of the Sabeel Center in Jerusalem, Rev. Canon Naim Ateek opened the 2005 Chicago Sabeel Conference at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago.
The theme for the conference, ?Jerusalem: will justice and peace embrace?? focused on the struggles Palestinians face living under Israeli military occupation; and the ways in which Jews, Christians and Muslims can stand together for human rights and social justice.
Sonia Nettnin, Amin, Oct 10, 2005
September 09, 20055741 reads
September 05, 20053898 readsIt began as yet another "honor killing," still relatively common in the Arab world: a young Muslim woman was poisoned, allegedly by her family, over an extramarital affair. But in a twist, her lover was a Christian ? and 13 of his relatives' homes were burned by an angry mob, all Muslims from the dead woman's clan.
The woman's family insist they were simply dispensing tribal justice. But some Christians say they were targeted because of their religion, reflecting growing worries about a rise in sectarianism after decades of tolerance between Palestinians' Muslim majority and a dwindling Christian minority.
By LARA SUKHTIAN, Associated Press Sep 5, 2005
June 08, 20053685 readsSenior US Christian leaders have met with the head of the Palestinian Authority following his discussions last week with President George W Bush. Their aim was to encourage further initiatives towards bridge-building in the Middle East.
Ekklisia, June 5, 2005
April 09, 20053410 readsA group of Palestinian Christian leaders concerned for the dramatic situation of the Christians in the land of the Holy One write an open letter to Bishops and Church Leaders around the world.
"In contrast to 10 years ago our community now represents less than 2 percent of the population and continues to decrease at an alarming rate. This is largely due to emigration. Many Palestinian Christians are leaving as a result of the ongoing conflict"
The Palestine Cronicle, April, 8, 2005
January 12, 20053930 readsBishop William Skylstad, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, called the Palestinian election which was held on 9 January a "historic day" for the Palestinians.
"The elections might mark a new day for people who are looking toward the future with hope," said Bishop Skylstad, who was in Jerusalem at the invitation of the bishops in the Holy Land for an annual meeting on the problems faced by the region's Christians.
Catholic News Service, Jan 10, 2005