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New Custodian of the Holy Land

May 20, 2016. Friar Francesco Patton is the new Custodian of the Holy Land. He succeeds Fr. Pierbattista Pizzaballa, who was in office for the last 12 years. Friar Francesco Patton is 52 years old from Vigo Meano (Italy). He graduated in Communication Sciences from the Pontifical Salesian University of Rome and until now was the provincial minister of the Order of Friars Minor in Saint Vigilius of Trent.

Nazareth Village: A look at how Jesus grew up

2014-08-28

This is the kind of town Jesus would have passed by growing up-going about his day as a young boy. It's a land filled with olive trees, open space and harvest. 

But this isn't your average land. It's part of 'Nazareth Village' which preserves the last remaining fields that were worked on by Jesus' friends, family and fellow villagers. 

AMER NICOLA
Nazareth Village, Education Manager
"Jesus grew up only 500 meters away from here. A five minute walk. This means He was familiar with this place. I'm very sure that He climbed this hill many times. Helping with the harvest, playing as a child, so maybe he even pressed grapes here.” 

The purpose is to understand how Jesus lived and what He saw on a daily basis. Some of it has been there-untouched-for centuries, but the village features replicas of synagogues and typical houses that were common back in the 1st century. 

It's an idea that came about so that visitors could get a glimpse of the kind of environment Jesus lived in and what inspired His parables. From the sower to the parable of the mustard seed.  

AMER NICOLA
Nazareth Village, Education Manager
"The Holy Land is called the 5th Gospel, because when you see the images that inspired him, this will let us understand His stories and the Bible and his parables in a better way.”
 
Here, 'villagers' dressed in traditional clothing work on the farms and houses, carrying out tasks just like Mary, Joseph and Jesus would have done.  Last year alone roughly 60,000 people visited Nazareth Village, to experience life as it was back then. This includes seeing the land and synagogues where Jesus would have passed by with his Apostles.  

AMER NICOLA
Nazareth Village, Education Manager
"We read a lot about Jesus. He was wandering all over Galilee, from town to town, from village to village. Preaching in synagogues, healing their sickness. It happened here, in this type of synagogue.”
 
The idea to build Nazareth Village took shape thanks to a local doctor from Nazareth. Even though most of the funds come from entrance fees, the non-profit group also carries out Biblical and Archeology courses to preserve the maintenance and development of the Village. 


KLH 
Nazarene Village
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