Catholic welfare organizations in the Holy Land

Throughout the Holy Land, different charitable and humanitarian organizations help the mission pursued by the Church in the region.

•     Caritas is a major organization. It has 3 different branches, in Jerusalem, Amman and Cyprus. It is part of Caritas Internationalis (CI). CI is a confederation of 162 separate Caritas organizations operating in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide. Caritas Jerusalem is a Jerusalem-based humanitarian coordinating socio-pastoral services of the Catholic Church in the Holy Land. It was founded in 1967 to respond to the humanitarian emergency that emerged in the aftermath of the 1967 War. Since its foundation, Caritas Jerusalem has grown and assumed increasing responsibilities, both in terms of program-base and its operational capability. Today the Jordanian branch is active in trying to alleviate the suffering of the Syrian refugees.

See here for Caritas Jerusalem:

See here for Caritas Jordan:

See here for Caritas Cyprus:

•    Catholic Relief Services (CRS) was founded in 1943 by the Catholic Bishops of the United States to assist the poor and disadvantaged outside the country. It is administered by a Board of Bishops selected by the Episcopal Conference of the United States, and is staffed by men and women committed to the Catholic Church’s apostolate of helping those in need. The organization assists persons on the basis of need, not creed, race or nationality. The main office of CRS is in Beit Hanina (East-Jerusalem) but they also count with local representative in Ramallah, Bethlehem and Gaza.International headquarters are in Baltimore, in the US.

See here:

•      Deutscher Verein vom Heiligen Lande (DVHL) – the German Association of the Holy Land was established in 1855 by the German Catholic Bishops, as a relief organization for the Christians in the Middle East. Besides the support of needy people, the Association has education and promotion of interreligious dialogue and reconciliation as a main part of its mission.

See here:

•    The Pontifical Mission for Palestine is an agency of the Holy See established by Pope Pius XII in 1949 to act as the Holy See’s special agency for humanitarian and charitable assistance to the people of the Holy Land without distinction of nationality or religion. It supports church and local community institutions, and also social, cultural, recreational and spiritual programs for the youth. It also provides short-term and long-term employment opportunities for the unemployed. There are two offices in the Holy Land, one in Amman and one in Jerusalem, while the central headquarters are in New York.

See here:

•    The « Secours Catholique » (Caritas France): House of Abraham, located in Ras al-Amud near the Mount of Olives, was founded in 1965 at the request of Pope Paul VI during his pilgrimage to the Holy Land. It is under the jurisdiction of the Apostolic Delegate of Jerusalem.

The place’s purposes are to accommodate pilgrims with modest means and to welcome local groups for days or for weekends of prayer and reflexion. The “Secours Catholique” there plays also the role of a sponsor for development or emergency programs.

See here:

•     Our Lady of Peace Center, owned by the Latin Patriarchal Vicariate in Amman, Jordan, the Centre is dedicated to serving people with disabilities, providing them educational and counselling services, physiotherapy and occupational therapy. The main center is in Amman but it has also 6 satellites centers (in Amman, Aqaba, Mafraq, Ajloun, Fuheis, Zerka).

•   Secretariat of Solidarity for Catholic Schools was established by the Congregation for the Oriental Churches in 1977. The office is in Jerusalem and depends directly on the Apostolic Delegation in Jerusalem and collaborates with the Apostolic Nunciatures in Israel, Jordan and Cyprus. The main missions of the Secretariat are to collect annual statistics about the Catholic schools and institutions, to help them to obtain the funds they need to operate.  It also supports the pastoral, educational, and charitable activities of the Catholic Ordinaries of the Holy Land and help poor young Christians to pursue their cultural and professional education in local universities and institutions of higher education.

•     The Society of Saint Yves is a Catholic human rights organization working under the patronage of the Latin Patriarchate in Jerusalem. It was founded in 1991 by the former Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem and the Holy Land, Michel Sabbah, to help “the poor and the oppressed” according to the social doctrine of the Catholic Church. St. Yves provides gratis legal assistance, counsel and advocacy to members of the community. Through National and International Lobby and Advocacy, the organization is able to bring the situation of the poor and marginalized to the attention of communities around the world.

See here:

•    The Society of Saint Vincent de Paul, located in Jerusalem, the Society was founded to serve the poor and the sick.