08/30/2012, 00.00
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Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem in Jordan to celebrate John the Baptist

Mgr Fouad Tawal took part in the memorial honouring the saint organised by the Parish of Madaba, which is located near the place of his martyrdom. The prelate also celebrated Mass for the 50th anniversary of Our Lady of the Annunciation Church in Amman, which recently underwent restoration work funded by the patriarchate.

Amman (AsiaNews/Agencies) - In Jordan, hundreds of Catholics crowded the courtyard of the Madaba parish church to celebrate John the Baptist, whose liturgical memorial was yesterday, 29 August. On its third edition, the diocese welcomed Mgr Fouad Tawal, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, who is visiting Jordan.

The prelate said he was "very happy" to have participated in the event during which songs and shows were dedicated to the "voice of John the Baptist," a man who "proclaimed the truth without fear." Celebrations were actually held on 26 August.

Madaba is near Machaerus, the place where the saint's martyrdom took place. This year, for the first time, the parish organised a pilgrimage. Jordan's deputy tourist minister was among the participants.

The patriarch arrived in Jordan on 24 August on the invitation of Fr Bashir Bader to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Our Lady of the Annunciation Parish Church in Amman.

At the church, which was restored with funds provided by the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, Mgr Tawal said Mass. In his homily, he stressed the need to spread a message of peace, love and brotherhood, wherever violence is growing instead.

At the end of the liturgy, Mgr Tawal met sick patients from the diocese, an event that the parish priest at Our Lady of the Annunciation conducts on the first Friday of each month.

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