BETHLEHEM - This year, it was Mgr William Shomali, General Vicar of the Latin Patriarchate, who presided over the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the Salesian Church in Bethlehem, on Saturday, June 24th, 2022. Participants included the Salesian Fathers, scouts and a crowd of faithful.
During the feast, Mgr Shomali expressed his thanks for having been invited to preside over the celebration, and pointed out in his homily the importance of mercy and forgiveness - as it derives from the Sacred Heart of Jesus, who forgave us even the cross and gave us life. "When Saint Faustina asked Jesus, 'why not punish those who cause wars and other evils?'", he said, "Jesus answered her, 'because I give them time before eternity to repent."
After the Mass, the scouts and the priests, accompanied by Mgr Shomali carrying the Holy Eucharist, set out in the streets of Bethlehem to head for the church of St. Catherine, near the Basilica of Nativity. During the procession, the General Vicar invited the crowd to sing “Heart of Jesus Christ, have mercy on us” in order to bring peace and love to the heart of people, of the world and of Palestine in particular. In the end, he granted his blessing to all, before the procession headed back to the Salesian Church. Another blessing was granted there by Mgr Shomali, followed by an invitation by the rector of the monastery to share some time together before returning home.
"O Sacred Heart of Jesus, make our heart like yours!"