Welcome Home | Custodia Terrae Sanctae

Welcome Home


Welcome Home

Welcome Back! 40 young Palestinans from all over the world returned to their homeland, Palestine, a few days ago. For some it is the first time, for others it is the first opportunity to visit their families for many years. In both cases, it is an occasion to strengthen an attachment that has never been forgotten.

“Sure I feel Palestinian, I am proud of my identity.”

“Yes, I am passionate about my cultural heritage.”

“I live in America, but Palestine is my home.”

“Even though I live far from here, I carry this country in my heart, and I feel at home in whatever part of the world.”

Welcomed by the band of the Bethlehem Scouts, the young Palestinians reached the office of ‘Azione Cattolica’ in the late afternoon of July 9th, where they were received by the Minister of Tourism and other local figures. At that point they were taken in procession through the streets of the city, up to the Municipality. Walking slowly through the market of the Old City, some of them looked around and remembered with emotion the scenes of their infancy, somewhat altered by recent events, while others saw everything for the first time – those who had seen Palestine only in their dreams.

“I am really excited. Despite the stress of the long journey, it’s a joy to be here, met by so many people wanting to welcome us. It’s been interesting to see Bethlehem and the enthusiasm of those who have come out to see us. I have great hopes for this trip.”

“I feel really great actually. It’s the first time that I’ve come here and I’m very curious to see Palestine."

“My parents are both Palestinians and they have told me many stories about this land. I have also read a lot and seen many things on television, and finally, today, I’m here. It’s truly amazing!”