Category Archives: Non classé

An astounding story

 

The dismiss Grec Orthodoxe Patriarche - Irineos I

The dismiss Grec Orthodoxe Patriarche – Irineos I

Due to transactions of church property, made secretly with Israeli settlers, the former Patriarch of the Greek Orthodox Church Irineos I, is living behind locked doors in the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem since 2005.

His successor, Theophilos III, does not authorize his lawyer,  doctor or any visitor to enter the house ” prison ” of the former Patriarch.

He spends his days completely isolated, praying, reading and writing, always wearing the black traditional costume of the Greek Orthodox clergy. Irineos still considers himself the Patriarch of the Greek Orthodox Church.

A Muslim Palestinian from the old city regularly brings him food in a basket, which he pulls up with a rope through one of the windows, overlooking an alley in the old town.

The allegations against the former Patriarch are based on the fact that he signed sales agreements with Jews wanting to increase their presence in the majority of the old Arab city of East Jerusalem.

Three important buildings in the Jaffa Gate were the subject of leases of 198 years and were sold to a group of anonumous investors…  the shops, the Imperial Hotel and the Petra Hotel are located in the Jaffa Gate at the intersection of Christian, Muslim and Armenian neighbourhoods.

According to the ‘Camp David’ agreement” of 2000, the Christian and Muslim areas, whose population is Arab, would remain under Palestinian control and become the new Palestinian capital in East Jerusalem, whereas the Jewish sector would be Israeli.

The Greek Orthodox Patriarchate holds 20 percent of the old town.

In 1990 another scandal was revealed. The Hospice of Saint John, near the Holy Sepulchre, was acquired through a foreign company, but funds came from the Housing Ministry, which was headed by Likud Minister David Levy at the time…

Obviously, a lot of money was involved with these properties agreements, but not enough related documents could be found. The financial Manager, Mr. Papadimas, vanished with           $ 700,000, and claims from his exile that a proxy of sale had been signed by Patriarch Irineos I, who replied to this statement that the document was fake!

Some think that the Patriarch Irineos wanted to remain in good favor with the Israeli authorities. However, one cannot ignore the fact that that many criminal investigations are underway in Greece concerning the scandals, accusing the Greek Church to be involved in the antics traffic, and of rigged trials and sexual offenses.

This movement of acquisition of property in the old town and the new city of Jerusalem is an indisputable fact, which worries the local population, because the number of settlers implanted in Jerusalem is continuously growing.

Hotel Petra at Jaffa gate- Jérusalem

Hotel Petra at Jaffa gate – Jerusalem

The nine Gates of the old city of Jerusalem

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Beautiful gate of the 'Ieshiva Bet El' in the Jewish quarter

Beautiful gate of the ‘Ieshiva Bet El’ in the Jewish quarter

 

Nine gates are in the wall of the Old city of Jerusalem built in the 16th century by Suleiman the Magnificent, they protect the cradle of the three monotheistic religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam :

-The Golden Gate – the Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent while renovating the walls of the old city definitely closed that gate in order to refrain the Jewish Messiah to pass.
– The Dung gate – Poor people used to live in the lower part of the old city  where  they  probably threw garbage. Next to it and later on in the 1980’s excavation an old medieval gate was opened to allow an easier passage
– The Tanners gate reopened recently.
– The Sion Gate or David Gate where is the Tomb of King David
– The Jaffa Gate in the direction of the Biblical city of Joppée, called Jaffa today.
– The New gate built at the end of the nineteen century to allow a quick passage to the    Christian quarter .
– The Damascus Gate the most beautiful gate in the north in direction of Naplouse and Damas.
– The Flowers Gate also called the Herod’s Gate opened in 1875 after the construction started outside the walls.
– The Lions Gate according to a legend the sultan Soliman the Magnificent had a terrible nightmare,  lions threatening to devour him as he did not seriously provide the protection of his population living inside the old city. He immediately hastened the construction of the city walls.

The ‘Three Marys’ and the ‘Saint Marys of the Sea’

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Mary Magdalene, Mary Salome and Mary Jacobe

There is a fascinating legend about the city called ”Saintes Maries de la Mer” in Provence, the southern part of France.

Three Saints, Mary Magdalene, Mary Salome and Mary Jacobe, whose relics are the object of devotion for pilgrims in the ” Saintes Maries de la Mer”, were the first witnesses according to the Gospels  of the resurrection of Jesus after his crucifixion in a place called Golgotha in the Old City of Jerusalem.

They followed their Uncle Joseph of Arimathea by boat to Alexandria, Egypt. A French legend tells us about their drift that led them on this Mediterranean coast to a Fortress city called at the time ” Oppidum-Ra” and which became  ”Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer” in 1838.

A beautiful church fortress, built in the Middle Ages at the heart of the city, reminds us of the dangers that were rampant in this region due to the impromptu arrival of pirates. It was a strategic retreat that allowed the population to shelter far from danger. This also explains the walls with slits and a fresh water well that is located inside it.

When talking about the Camargue and the Saintes, there is always the image of the Gypsies that comes to our mind with their annual religious pilgrimage the last sunday in May, in honor of their landlady the Holy Sarah.

Black Sarah the patron Saint of the gypsies
Who was she ?

An Egyptian child servant with dark skin, who was entirely devoted to the three Maries

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A generous woman from the village who welcomed the three women warmly upon their arrival and offered them hospitality.

Several Mediterranean towns such as Arles, Les Baux de Provence, Marseille claim the privilege of hosting the Barque of the Holies Marys.

The three Marys were buried together at the heart of the city where the medieval church was built.

The tomb of Mary Magdalene can be seen in the Massif of the ”Sainte Baume” ….

Martha, the sister of Lazarus converted to a terrible monster (the Tarasque) that used to rise out of the waters of the Rhone to devour people and livestock at Tarascon …

 

 

 

City's Emblem of Saint Mary de la Mer

City’s Emblem of Saint Mary de la Mer

The Italian architecte Antonio Barluzzi and his artwork in the Holyland

The architecte Antonio Barluzzi

The architecte Antonio Barluzzi

The architect Antonio Barluzzi (1884-1960) was born in Rome. He devoted his life to the Holy Land and designed, on behalf of the Custody of the Holy Land, new Sanctuaries. the first one was at the foot of the Mount of olives called ‘Gethsemane’  meaning the Olive Oil Press. After that he created the  ‘the Church of the Transfiguration’ on Mount Tabor, which was to be followed by many others works.

Barluzzi brought new architecture to the Holy Land. At that time, designers were following the styles of past eras by rebuilding of gothic cross-shaped churches in a  classic Byzantine style

Antonio Barluzzi was a strong believer. He conceived these religious sanctuaries to remind “the Mystery of Jesus’ life”, so that every pious visitor would be able to feel the serenity of this sacred place.

After receiving the task of designing the new “Church of All Nations” in the Gethsemane project, which also included the design of the Sanctuary of Mount Tabor, Barluzzi adapted the project according to the discoveries that took place at the same time on the ruins of the Byzantine church of the fourth century.

The basilica buit in 1924 was designed as a unique space. It contains only two rows of six columns, into which the light is filtered throughmidnight blue glazing, where thousands of stars are reminding Jesus’ Night of agony.

The mosaics that decorate the apses are the illustrations of events that occurred on the next morning of the agony, the kiss of Judas and his arrest.

Everything has been designed to make this place for meditation and prayer and to lead to the most important element : the Stone, remembering the location where Jesus spent the night crying and praying,  located near the ‘altar.

Antonio Barluzzi was getting quite frustrated at not being known enough and left his mark by been represented on the vault of the dome to the right of the apse.

Also in ‘the Church of the Visitation’  at ‘Ein Karem one can see the architecte been painted in one of the drawings inside the church.

In 1960 began the construction of an even more remarkable church : the ‘Annunciation to Mary’ in Nazareth.

Barluzzi died that year and did  not have the opportunity to see this church built according to his plans.

The Basilica of the agony - Gethsemane

The Basilica of the agony – Gethsemane

 

The church of the Mount of Beatitudes

The church of the Mount of Beatitudes

The Church of the Transfiguration - Mont Tabor

The Church of the Transfiguration – Mont Tabor

View of Mont Tabor and the Church of the Transfiguration

View of Mont Tabor and the Church of the Transfiguration

DOMUS GALILAEAE – The Galilee’s Home

Domus Galilaeae The garden

Domus Galilaeae The garden

This magnificent building of Domus Galilaeae is in the lower galilee dominating the Sea of Galilee and the Mont of Beatitudes.

Domus Galilaeae first stone was laid in  January 1999, the building was built in a short period of time with traditional Tuscan stone.

The opening of the site was held in 2000.

Managed by the Catholic organization Neocatechumenal Way, Domus Galilaeae employs about 150 full-time people, including workers, technicians and volunteers. There are 37 Christian Arab workers, 32 Arab Muslims, 21 technicians, 20 Jews, Druze and 10 Maronites.

It was inaugurated by Pope John Paul II during his visit for the Holy Land Millennium .

In the center of the library is an ancient Torah.

Francisco José Argüello Gómez y Wirtz more fluently called Kiko Arguello Wirtz was born in Spain January 9, 1939. A Spanish artist who studied fine art at the Royal Academy of San Fernando in Madrid and received in 1959 the Special National Award for painting.

He is not only the architect but also the innovator of what became in 1964 the Neocatechumenal Way in the slums of Palomeras Altas in Madrid.

On May 13, 2009, he received an honorary doctorate by the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family.

The center is designed as a place where Christians would learn about the living tradition of Israel following the footsteps of early Christian saints “who have returned to their Hebrew roots by studying the meaning of prayer, celebrations and Hebrew liturgies” .

John Paul II, who illustrated a new era affinity between Catholics and Jews, stressed the need to appreciate the Jewish roots in order to live an authentic Christianity.

Domus Galilaeae entrance hall

Domus Galilaeae entrance hall

Domus Galilaeae roof and terrasse overlooking the Sea of Galilee

Domus Galilaeae roof and terrasse overlooking the Sea of Galilee

Domus Galilaeae magnificent library

Domus Galilaeae magnificent library

Domus Galilaeae - the chapel

Domus Galilaeae – the chapel

 

 

The painter JonOne in visit in Israel

JonOne ''Marianne'' at the Bourbon Palace

JonOne ”Marianne” at the Bourbon Palace

JonOne. a painter and graffiti artist,  is the guest of honor at the Gallery 32 Tel- Aviv, where a magnificent exhibition of his works is being presented.

I  am very happy to have guided him, his family and friends for a few days.

Andrew John Perello, was born in 1963 in the Harlem neighborhood of New York to parents from the Dominican Republic. As a Harlem street child his introduction to street art began at an early age. He became acquainted with tags and graffiti drawn on subway cars and on the walls of the city, ” The subway is a museum that runs through the town ” he said. At 17, he entered the world of graffiti with his childhood friend “White Man,” he is marking his name Jon with the number 156 on walls and trains in his neighborhood. He moved to Paris in 1987, this city  was a revelation to him, he said Paris was the nucleus of street art, he is still today inspired and fascinated by this beautiful city.

Renowned painter, he has recently executed for the ”Palais Bourbon” a painting of the famous  ‘Marianne’ in his own style. This painting will soon be printed on French Republic postage stamps.

JonOne A Beautiful Madness -about the artist  YouTube

The artist with one of his paintings

The artist with one of his paintings

Mount of Olives and view of the old city with Shanae, Christophe, Gemal, Jon and Mai

Mount of Olives and view of the old city with Shanae, Christophe, Gemal, Jon and Mai

Jon in front of the Dome of the Rock Jerusalem

Jon in front of the Dome of the Rock Jerusalem

Sarona – Tel-aviv’s German colony –

Tel-aviv - Sarona

Tel-aviv – Sarona

”The Templers” were Protestant religious people who came to the Holy Land in the nineteen century with their mentor Christoph Hoffman calling for the return to the origins of Christianity and the establishment of urban and agricultural settlements in Palestine.

Their involvement with the Nazism government during Hitler’s time made them the ennemy of the British in power in Palestine and after World War II, the entire Templar community with their seven settlements in Palestine was deported to Australia, never to return.

They arrived in Palestine more than a decade before the first Zionist Jewish immigrants came and in many ways, they served as models.

Despite their small number in the country, the Templars nonetheless contribute to
modern techniques of agricultural development in Palestine and they quickly gained a reputation for their skill and precision in the execution of various works.

They planted vineyards and orchards using modern technology unknown in Palestine, they created the first oil mills for grain that operated with steam engine. They have tapped into the soil to find this water so rare and necessary for the survival of everyone. They opened the first European-style hotels and pharmacies, and embarked on the production of important commodities like soap and cement – or beer and wine. They were the first in the market of “Jaffa Oranges”.

Their beautiful houses,  of continental elegance, with their red tile roofs were surrounded by flourishing gardens. These neighborhoods have become today, after their renovations, trendy and luxurious places either in Jerusalem, Haifa, Bethlehem of Galilee, Jaffa and Tel Aviv Sarona.

The Sarona district includes 37  Templar houses that were renovated (out of 85 at the time of the Templars) 5 of them have even been raised and displaced to expand the Kaplan street and to allow better circulation. The project, which lasted for years, finally ended and we can see now numerous high luxury buildings that are being built on the site of the houses that were destroyed together with shops and “haute cuisine” restaurants even installed in underground vaulted cellar of the agricultural cooperative used by the German Templars.

This unique neighborhood, thanks to the renovation, allow us to keep an eye on the past and I was told  that the young german generation belonging to this community come sometime to visit the Holy Land and their ancestors patrimony. They are delighted to know that their heritage has been preserved and they are proud of it and so are we !….

 

Tel-Aviv - Sarona

Tel-Aviv – Sarona

Tel-aviv - Sarona

Tel-Aviv – Sarona