Bethlehem: Addressing the faithful in his Christmas Eve midnight mass in Bethlehem on Tuesday, Latin Patriarch Fuad Twal urged "men of good will" to seek peace amid "the sufferings in the Middle East."

Twal, the most senior Roman Catholic bishop in the region, made reference to turmoil across the Middle East this year, but added a special appeal for efforts to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

"Only justice and peace in the Holy Land can reestablish balance and stability in the region and in the world," he said in the traditional mass, delivered from the Catholic St. Catherine Church, adjoined to Bethlehem's Church of the Nativity.

"From this holy place, I invite politicians and men of good will to work with determination for peace and reconciliation that encompasses Palestine and Israel in the midst of all the sufferings in the Middle East."


Twal urged the faithful to offer prayers for "our brothers and sisters in Syria, who are dying mercilessly, (and) the people of Egypt who are fighting for national agreement, freedom and equality."

"Let us pray for unity and reconciliation in Lebanon, in Iraq, in Sudan, in the other countries of the region and the rest of the world. Let us pray for stability and prosperity in Jordan," he added.

(Agencies)

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