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Rome Reports

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Reproducing the Trees from the Mount of Olives

FR. PIERBATTISTA PIZZABALLA Custodian of the Holy Land "These olive trees, they are about 1,000 years old. We've been able to prove this through the trunk, the wood and also through the tradition of the Church. The trees were there before the time of the Middle Ages. What we see is that ancient Christian communities preserved these trees in a special way." The trees are in good condition, considering they were planted roughly 2,000 years ago.  The study reveals that these eight trees have the same origin and DNA. ANTONIO CIMATO Coordinator Scientific Investigation "It was difficult to identify the units or pieces that could be useful in the investigation. Especially since many of them didn't have a trunk. Now we are planning of taking the investigation even further in the Mount of Olives.â? With the help of technology, scientists want to reproduce those eight olive trees within ten to twenty years. Organizers say it's a unique way to preserve the Garden that witnessed the suffering of Jesus. OFL/KLH AA VM -PR