President Meets with Croatian Franciscans in Jerusalem

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, July 29, 2019 – President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović began a state visit to Israel on Sunday by meeting with Croatian Franciscans in Jerusalem and presenting them with the Charter of the Republic of Croatia for fostering the spiritual tradition of Christianity, looking after Croatian pilgrims and promoting Croatian identity.

She met with Fr. Siniša Srebrenović, who accepted the Charter, Fr. Francesco Patton, the Custodian of the Holy Land, and Fr. Marcelo Cichinelli, the Guardian of the Franciscan Monastery.

“It is my great pleasure to meet you here this evening, after visiting the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre, which was allegedly last opened by a Croat, Fr. Bonifacije Drakolica. As President of Croatia, I am particularly proud of all Croatian Franciscans who, for the past seven centuries, together with their brethren from all over Europe, have been guarding Christ’s tomb and looking after Christians in the Holy Land, and who have made an immeasurable contribution to the preservation of Croatian identity, language and culture,” Grabar-Kitarović said.

She said that long was the list of Croatian Franciscans who had accomplished their spiritual and humanitarian mission in the Holy Land, working as scientists and writers of historical and religious publications and helping the sick and needy. She mentioned Fr. Drakolica who had led the renovation of the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre in the mid-16th century.

Grabar-Kitarović said that the Franciscans’ mission was evangelisation and living in brotherhood, poverty and solidarity. “These are the values that have been promoted for centuries by Croatian Franciscans from all provinces of Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina,” she said.

The Croatian president begins the official part of her visit on Monday when she is due to meet with President Reuven Rivlin, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Speaker of the Knesset Yuli-Yoel Edelstein and Foreign Minister Israel Katz.

More news about relations between Croatia and Israel can be found in the Politics section.


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