by the President of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops
the Metropolitan of the Greek Orthodox Church of Canada
and the Primate of the Armenian Holy Apostolic Church Diocese of Canada
on the Restoration of the Holy Sepulchre
It is with great joy that we, the Most Reverend Douglas Crosby, O.M.I., Bishop of Hamilton, President of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, Metropolitan Sotirios Athanassoulas, of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Toronto (Canada), and His Grace Bishop Abgar Hovakimian, Primate of the Armenian Holy Apostolic Church Diocese of Canada, announce to our faithful that the Holy Sepulchre of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the holiest shrine in Christianity, will be restored for the first time in over 200 years.
The Roman Catholic Church, the Greek Orthodox Church and the Armenian Holy Apostolic Church will co-finance the restoration work.
The Church of the Holy Sepulchre in the Holy Land is within the Christian Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem. The church contains the two holiest sites in Christendom: the site where Our Lord Jesus Christ was crucified, known as “Calvary”, and Jesus’s empty tomb, known as the “Holy Sepulchre”, where He was buried and from which He rose again from death.
The church has been a major Christian pilgrimage destination since its establishment in the fourth century as the site of the Death and Resurrection of Christ. The Edicule, an 1810 structure that encompasses the tomb of Christ, has been damaged by the vast volumes of tourists and pilgrims visiting the site.
We urge our beloved faithful to participate in and to support the historic joint restoration of the Holy Sepulchre of Our Lord Jesus Christ.
You can make your contributions to either the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Toronto, or the Armenian Diocese of Canada, for the jointly established “Holy Sepulchre Restoration Fund 2016”. Your contributions can be made by cheques, sent to the:
1) The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, at 2500 Don Reid Drive, Ottawa, Ontario K1H 2J2. In addition, the Holy See uses part of the proceeds of the annual Good Friday Collection for the maintenance of the holy sites in the Holy Land.
2) The Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Toronto (Canada), at 86 Overlea Boulevard, Toronto, Ontario M4H 1C6.
3) The Armenian Diocese of Canada, at 615 Stuart Avenue, Outremont, Quebec H2V 3H2.
We thank you in advance for your heartfelt prayers and contributions in this important project of ecclesial collaboration and its witness to ancient Christian devotion. May Our Lord Jesus Christ bless you and this endeavor.
Monday, October 24, 2016
The Most Reverend Douglas Crosby, OMI
Bishop of Hamilton and
President of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops
Metropolitan Sotirios Athanassoulas
Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Toronto Canada
His Grace Bishop Abgar Hovakimyan
Primate of the Armenian Holy Apostolic Church Diocese of Canada