Franciscan friars offer little Holy Land in United States capital

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Since 1880, people in the United States have had a little piece of the Holy Land tucked in the nation's capital. The Franciscan friars at the Monastery of the Holy Land built 85 replicas of some of the most important Christian sites.

FR. DAVID GRENIER
Commissary of the Holy Land
You will find replica of the Holy Sepulchre and replica of Calvary, that are at the same distance than in Jerusalem and the height of Calvary is the same than in Jerusalem. You have the Grotto of Bethlehem, the Grotto of Nazareth, the Grotto of Gethsemane, the place of the Ascension. I mean many, many replicas that you can see in the Holy Land. So that's why we are called the Holy Land in America.

Each year on special feast days, such as Christmas or Good Friday, the friars celebrate services in these holy places similar to those celebrated in the Holy Land.

FR. DAVID GRENIER
Commissary of the Holy Land
We try to take advantage of this beautiful legacy that we have here with the possibility to have the people to experience some things special that we do in the Holy Land because that's the whole idea of the place—to have the people experience how it is in the Holy Land as much as we can.
On Good Friday, we do a celebration that is done at the Holy Sepulchre, which is the burial of Christ. We take the body of Christ from Calvary and with songs, we bring Him into the tomb, reproducing the rites that were done at the time.

Fr. David explains that the monastery raises money to be sent to support the Franciscan missionaries serving the Christian community in the Holy Land.

KG

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