ANGLICAN, CATHOLIC LEADERS ASK ISRAEL TO PROTECT HOLY SITES IN JERUSALEM – VATICAN MUSEUMS RELEASE BOOK ON ETHICS OF CONSERVATION : God, who cannot be outdone in generosity, still uses you and me to help our brothers and sisters.


Joint Statement by the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby and the Archbishop of Westminster Cardinal Vincent Nichols about recent events in Jerusalem

(March 5, 2018) – The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby and the Archbishop of Westminster Vincent Nichols have called on the Israeli Government to protect the status quo at the holy sites in Jerusalem.

In a joint letter to the Israeli Ambassador to London, Mark Regev, the two faith leaders expressed their deep concern at the events unfolding in Jerusalem of unprecedented, punitive and discriminatory taxation of Christian Institutions and their fears that this dispute could inflict longterm damage on relations between the two communities.

The letter stated that, “they threaten to cause serious damage to the Christian presence in Jerusalem, to Christian families, and to the Christian institutions, including hospitals and schools, which serve many of the poorest people, regardless of their background.

“It is our view that the measures being pressed in Jerusalem and in the Knesset are a clear and evident threat to the status quo. These violations of historic agreements risk undermining prospects for peaceful coexistence between communities, at a time of already heightened tensions.”

The two Archbishops are praying for the peace of Jerusalem and have urged the Israeli government to address this crisis as a matter of urgency and immediately enter dialogue with the local Churches to find a resolution.


The Ethnological Materials Laboratory of the Vatican Museums has released a new book entitled “Ethics and Practice of Conservation: Manual for the conservation of ethnographic and multi-material assets”.

Available in English, Italian, and Spanish, the Vatican Museums’ new book on the ethics and practice of conservation is the result of nearly a century of experience at the Anima Mundi Ethnological Museum.

“Ethics and Practice of Conservation: Manual for the conservation of ethnographic and multi-material assets”, edited by Stefania Pandozy and Mathilde De Bonis, also contains a rich collection of photographs.

The images succeed in showing the ethics underlying the conservation practice of Vatican experts.

The Anima Mundi Ethnological Museum was set up by Pope Pius XI in 1925 and is one of the few in the world to preserve testimonies and artistic artifacts, and spiritual traditions of all peoples.

The new book details 16 study cases of conservation efforts performed upon objects including prehistoric flints, a piece of Japanese armor, a Polynesian reliquary, Chinese paintings, a wampum belt, and artworks made of Amazonian feathers.

(JFL: You’ll really want to click on this link to view the accompanying video:




Pope Francis, upon learning of the death overnight of former Israeli President Shimon Peres, sent the following telegram to current Israeli President Reuven Rivlin:

“I was deeply saddened to learn of the death of His Excellency Shimon Peres, and I wish to convey to you and to all the people of Israel my heartfelt condolences. I fondly recall my time with Mr. Peres at the Vatican and renew my great appreciation for the late President’s tireless efforts in favour of peace. As the State of Israel mourns Mr. Peres, I hope that his memory and many years of service will inspire us all to work with ever greater urgency for peace and reconciliation between peoples. In this way, his legacy will truly be honoured and the common good for which he so diligently laboured will find new expressions, as humanity strives to advance on the path towards enduring peace. With the assurance of my prayers for all who grieve, especially for the Peres family, I invoke the divine blessings of consolation and strength upon the nation. FRANCISCUS PP.”

Pope Francis met President Shimon Peres in 2014 during his three-day trip in late May to Jordan, Bethlehem and Jerusalem.A month later, he welcomed Peres, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Orthodox Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople to the Vatican and together they planted an olive tree in the gardens. The pontiff met Peres again in September 2014 in the Vatican. Peres’ term as presidemnt had ended in July of that year-

The closest I ever was to former Israeli President Shimon Peres was on December 29, 2008 when I attended the reception he offered at his residence for the heads of the Christian Churches in Israel. This is a yearly event for the exchange of New Year’s greetings between the president and the religious leaders.




At the time, I was in Bethlehem at the Jacir Palace Hotel for a 10-day visit over the Christmas period. On the 29th, I had gone to Jerusalem with a pastor friend of mine in Beit Sahour, Fr. Faysal, who had business at the Latin Patriarchate. There was the usual stop at the Israeli checkpoint (Bethlehem is in Palestine), documents were shown, questions were asked and the car was examined from top to bottom. We were okayed to pass through and I spent the day at the Patriarchate before going to President Peres’ home.




Just last Monday evening in the Vatican, Pope Francis met with members of the World Jewish Congress.