“Respect for minorities is to be considered the touchstone of social harmony.” This
simple statement from his Message of Peace in 1989 has become, in effect, the motto
of the Saint John Paul II Youth Pastoral Center in Sarajevo.
We are supporting this work of reconciliation by the youth center with a contribution
The center in the Bosnian capital remains faithful to this motto, with a range of events and meetings throughout the year. First place among them is taken by the days of spiritual reflection organized for the 300 volunteer helpers and the 5,000 or so young people who visit the center over the course of the year. Often, this is the first place where they hear the message of love in this region, so torn by warfare and crisis, and by hatred and violence. Here, for example, in an ecumenical summer camp for Catholics and Orthodox, they learn to overcome prejudices, to respect and have high regard for the individual, and not merely liturgical, particularities of the other person. The same is true of the interfaith seminars—all moderated by experts—which are helping to build human bridges across the religious divides. One of the especially uplifting and engaging events is the “Marijafest,” a music festival attended by several hundred young people. So the foundations of Christian charity are laid. Respect for others, and the awareness that we are all children of God can help to overcome the gulf between us. Faith in Jesus Christ and in the inexhaustible power of His Love can also give us the strength to forgive.
We are supporting this work of reconciliation by the youth center with a contribution of $36,500. Would you like to help us, with a contribution of $30, $70 or perhaps $150, to open the hearts of these young people to this gift of faith?
17.806 children from all over Syria will be waiting for a Christmas gift this year. Sister Annie Demerjian from Aleppo offered clothes, made by Christian housewives, and small gifts. With your help, we hope to make a gift to them.
In Aleppo, more than 3.000 children depend on the project A Drop of Milk, which monthly distributes milk to children from birth to 10-years-old. With your help, we hope to continue this project next year.
11.5 million Syrians, including 5 million children do not have access to health care. Embargos and sanctions aggravate the situation. With your help, we hope to support the health center in Lattaquie.