St. Francis Appeal
Christians in the Holy Land know they have a very special mission given to them by God.
“A single sunbeam is enough to drive away many shadows,”
– St. Francis of Assisi
Francis of Assisi was born into a prosperous family and enjoyed a carefree youth. He dreamed of becoming a knight and gaining glory on the battlefield. That dream was shattered when he was taken to prison following a fight against a nearby town and found himself disillusioned and broken. This brokenness was what allowed him to humble himself and heed the voice of God to give up his riches and devote his life to rebuilding the Christian church.
As the founder of the Franciscan order, he became known for love, simplicity and the practice of poverty. St. Francis never expected his small band of brothers to have a generational impact, and yet today they are one of the largest religious orders in the world. St. Francis’ message was one of faith and joy but sadly, hostility and ongoing enmity is still prominent in the Holy Land.
COVID-19 has had a tragic impact on Holy Land tourism, forcing tens of thousands of Palestinians into unemployment. The pandemic has hastened an economic devastation of vast proportion. More than ever, Christians are being forced to flee their homeland because of high unemployment rates, inadequate housing, and poor economic and political factors inflicting widespread suffering. Our world desperately needs the light of Christ. The Gospel of John preaches that Jesus is called “the true light, which gives light to everyone” ( John 1:9). Christians are called to be lights in the darkness.
We are beckoned to sustain the Christian community with love, faith, pardon, peace and hope.
Because of the generosity of our supporters, Franciscan Foundation for the Holy Land is able to provide life-giving educational and humanitarian resources to those shadowed by darkness.
Without these critical programs, our brothers and sisters will have no other option except to flee the Holy Land to seek a better way of life. As we continue fighting the good fight to preserve Christianity in the birthplace of Christ, may we emulate the light that St. Francis shone to others. We humbly ask that you may serve as a beacon of light by helping us meet the needs of others through a gift of financial support. A donation of any amount sheds light into someone’s darkest place. Know that I carry you and your loved ones in my heart, and lift you up in my prayers.
Yours in Christ,
Father Peter Vasko, OFM