WATCH: Jerusalem Latin Patriarch leads mass in Gaza ahead of Christmas

Christians make up a minority of about 3,500 people out of Gaza's 1.5 million mostly Muslim population.

By REUTERS
December 21, 2014 16:16
1 minute read.

Jerusalem Latin Patriarch leads mass in Gaza ahead of Christmas

Jerusalem Latin Patriarch leads mass in Gaza ahead of Christmas

 
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Jerusalem's Latin Patriarch, Fouad Twal, arrived in Gaza on Sunday to visit local Christians who are unable to travel to Bethlehem for Christmas.

Christians make up a minority of about 3,500 people out of Gaza's 1.5 million mostly Muslim population.

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"Christmas is the holiday of peace and love, we hope that everyone will live in peace. Always peace comes with justice, there is no peace that comes by force or fight. With justice we can live in peace. From Gaza we ask the whole world to feel with us and look to our situations, do not forget Gaza," said Fuad Twal while making his way through Erez crossing between Israel and Gaza.

In the West Bank city of Bethlehem, believed to be the birthplace of Jesus, Christians prayed in the Church of the Nativity on the last Sunday of Advent, marking the culmination of the festive season ahead of Christmas.

Just days ahead of Christmas, dozens of Christian worshippers congregated in the church to attend the Sunday mass in the Biblical town.

"Today is the last Sunday of Christmas preparations. We wish that our relatives and friends from around the world will come to Bethlehem to celebrate Christmas," said Elias Abu Akleh from Bethlehem.

The word "Advent" means "coming" or "arrival."



It marks the beginning of a festive season in which millions of Christians around the world make their preparations for Christmas.

Thousands of Christian pilgrims are expected to travel to Bethlehem to celebrate Christmas.
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