Eugenie Tabourian, my nonagenarian maternal grandmother, passed away recently. She was an Armenian Christian from Jerusalem. Our whole family are Jerusalemites, in fact, dating back to the time when my grandparents fled Ottoman Turkey during the Armenian genocide of 1915.To read the full story, click HERE. The photograph is of Palestinian Christians lighting candles in Bethlehem.
Indeed, the Holy Land was once bustling with local Christians, and two of the four quarters of the Old City of Jerusalem (the Christian and Armenian ones) were a living testimony to their millennia-old presence. Today, many indigenous Christians - including members of my own family - have left this golden city (as the prophet Zechariah described it) in search of fresher pastures that provide more viable political and economic alternatives.
So what do Christians witness to in a holy land that is host to many hurried pilgrimages?
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Christians surviving in the Holy Land - barely
This Lent, we might want to keep in our prayers and our awareness those Christians who live in the Holy Land, and who have lived there for generations. Harry Hagopian, an Armenian Christian living in Jerusalem, writes eloquently today in Ekkelesia about their plight: