A Catholic pilgrim prays at the Church of Nativity, traditionally believed by Christians to be the birthplace of Jesus Christ, in the West Bank town of Bethlehem, today.
ASSOCIATED PRESS Enlarge
BETHLEHEM, West Bank — The top Roman Catholic cleric in the Holy Land has celebrated the United Nations’ recent recognition of a Palestinian state in his annual pre-Christmas remarks.
Latin Patriarch Fouad Twal told followers at the patriarchate's headquarters in Jerusalem on Monday that they were celebrating “two occasions, the birth of Christ our Lord and the birth of the state of Palestine.”
From Jerusalem, Twal set off in a procession for the West Bank city of Bethlehem, Jesus’ traditional birthplace.
There, he was reminded that life on the ground for Palestinians has not really changed since the statehood recognition last month.
He had to enter the biblical city through a massive metal gate in the barrier of towering concrete slabs Israel built between Jerusalem and Bethlehem during a wave of Palestinian attacks in the last decade.
Guidelines: Please keep your comments smart and civil. Don't attack other readers personally, and keep your language decent. Comments that violate these standards, or our privacy statement or visitor's agreement, are subject to being removed and commenters are subject to being banned. To post comments, you must be a registered user on toledoblade.com. To find out more, please visit the FAQ.