JERUSALEM – On Wednesday 15 June 2016, the Mother Superior General of the Sisters of Nazareth, Sr. Cecile Van Robais, met His Beatitude Patriarch Fouad Twal to sign an agreement by which the community handed over to the Latin Patriarchate over a three year term the management of a school in Haifa.
During the meeting, Patriarch Fouad Twal greeted the generosity of the community of the Sisters of Nazareth, while recognizing the important educational mission which they have fulfilled over many years. “A mission which we shall carry on, said the Patriarch, reminding how “through schools, our call for dialogue, ecumenism, coexistence and mercy is expressed.”
Sr. Cecile reminded with emotion how the Sisters of Nazareth have successfully conducted this mission for over 150 years. Today the community, getting older, decided to pass the torch to the Schools of the Latin Patriarchate. Fr. Faysal Hijazin, Director General of the Latin Patriarchate Schools, who attended the meeting and the signing of the agreement, underscored how the educational mission of the Latin Patriarchate was born round the same period, with the first school founded in 1854.
The Sisters of Nazareth, handing over for three years the management of this school to the Latin Patriarchate, wish that the school may grow more and more and that “the Patriarchate will continue to take care of the young, to educate them and to train them, so that they would not feel compelled to emigrate”, Sr. Cecile further said. The emigration of young Christians is very worrying for the Holy Land “especially in Palestine where it is hard to find employment”, Fr. Faysal pointed out, recognizing that “young Israeli Arabs would come back more easily to their home country after their studies”.
The Latin Patriarchate is planning to give a boost to this secondary school in Haifa, and wishes also to start another school in Chefaram.