May 2021
Livestream Bishop Hosam Naoum's installation on May 13
Bishop Hosam Naoum will be installed as the Bishop of the Diocese of Jerusalem, bearing the title Archbishop at 4 p.m. (9 a.m. EDT) on Thursday, May 13, 2021, Ascension Day, at St. George’s Cathedral, Jerusalem.

Watch the livestream on YouTube (at right) or on the AFEDJ website at www.afedj.org

In succeeding Archbishop Suheil S. Dawani, Bishop Naoum will become the 15th Bishop of Jerusalem and the fifth Palestinian to serve as diocesan bishop.
Prior to becoming dean of St. George’s Cathedral in 2012, Bishop Naoum was canon pastor of the Arabic congregation at the cathedral for seven years. He was educated at Rhodes University in South Africa and holds masters and doctorate degrees from Virginia Theological Seminary.

Bishop Hosam recently spoke with American Friends about what causes him to hope. He said, “Jerusalem is the city of hope, the city of the resurrection, and we are entrusted with this mission in the Holy Land – to be a beacon of hope, love, and peace in this world.”

For those who would like express prayers and support to Bishop Hosam in written form, please send these to bishop@j-diocese.org. Please keep Bishop Naoum, his family, and the people and institutions of the Diocese in your prayers.
D.C.-area friends band together to replace St. Luke's Hospital's failed ultrasound machine
The new 4D ultrasound - the only one of its kind in Palestine - restores diagnostic capabilities across many hospital departments.
As the only charity hospital in Nablus, a city of 350,000 people, St. Luke’s Hospital is the sole health care option for many impoverished people and, increasingly because of the economic downturn caused by the pandemic, many middle-class families.

With a new ultrasound to replace its 20 year-old machine that began failing six years ago, St. Luke’s staff will no longer have to turn patients away for lack of diagnostic capability.
"Finally, thank God! Our dream came true..."

— Salwa Khoury, St. Luke's Hospital
St. Luke's staff thanks the 12 churches and more than 70 individual donors from Maryland, Washington, D.C. and Virginia for their friendship and support. The effort was led by the Rev. Sari Ateek, rector of St. John's Norwood Church, Chevy Chase, MD, and members of his congregation.

"Finally, thank God! Our dream came true with the arrival of the new ultrasound machine to our x-ray department," said Salwa Khoury, St. Luke's public relations director. "We confirm our thanks and gratitude to all donors who shared the responsibility with us...and appreciate your continuous support and solidarity with our mission at St. Luke's."

Fr. Ateek explained the impulse behind the campaign, "When you consider the realities on the ground in Israel and Palestine, you know just how precious something like hope can be...The work of a charitable hospital like St. Luke's - which brings high quality medical care and attention to the most disadvantaged in the community - is truly the work of God. It is the remarkable work of bringing light and love and hope to the least of these."

In need of a dose of hope? Watch the greeting from St. Luke's staff below.
Episcopal News Service features Diocese of Jerusalem school leaders in update on pandemic
Two leaders of Diocese of Jerusalem institutions were recently interviewed by Episcopal News Service via Zoom to talk about the impact the pandemic has had on their students and school communities.

Dua'a Bisharat, principal of Saviour's Episcopal School in Zarqa, Jordan, and Giovanni Anbar, director of Episcopal Technological and Vocational Training Center (ETVTC) in Ramallah, along with AFEDJ Executive Director John Lent, offered their perspectives on the ongoing effect more than one-year of shutdowns and economic fallout has had on Diocese of Jerusalem institutions and the wider region.

Bisharat shared the worst possible news that some students and parents have died after contracting the coronavirus. She is encouraging teachers to schedule their vaccinations. School officials are hopeful but can’t commit to a full reopening in the fall until the infection rates come down, she said.

“As Palestinians, we are used to catastrophe,” ETVTC's Anbar, told ENS. He and the school’s teachers and staff members were forced to rethink their education program, moving much of it online, while following guidelines to slow the pandemic’s spread.

Lent explained the concern that American Friends continues to have for the people in the region. “We wanted to put the news out there that the region’s still really struggling,” he said. “While things are looking up here in the United States … in that part of the world, it is still a huge struggle and the financial impact of the pandemic is not over.”

The article also covers conditions in countries that make up the Diocese of Cyprus and the Gulf including Iraq and Yemen as well as the pandemic-related hardship encountered by vulnerable foreign workers in the region’s richer countries such as UAE, Bahrain, and Qatar.

Read the full story here.
Mark June 20 as Jerusalem Sunday on your calendar
Remember our brothers and sisters in the Holy Land
Each year, on June 22, the Anglican Cycle of Prayer calls for prayers for the Diocese of Jerusalem.

American Friends calls on all friends of the Diocese of Jerusalem to join us on the fourth Sunday of Pentecost, June 20 – the Sunday closest to the appointed day – to reflect and pray for Holy Land Christians and the transformative humanitarian ministries they freely offer their neighbors across Palestine, Israel, Jordan, and Lebanon. 

During Pentecost, we mark and remember the first Christians who were present when the gift of the Holy Spirit moved among the followers of Jesus. 

The descendants of those early Christians in the Holy Land remain followers of Jesus today. Their Christian witness across the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem is embodied in the ministries of charitable hospitals, schools for impoverished students, and centers for children with disabilities.

On each visit to a diocesan institution, the leaders repeatedly say to visitors, “Keep us in your prayers. Please do not forget us.”

Bishop Greg Rickel, AFEDJ Chair and Bishop of the Diocese of Olympia, encourages Episcopalians to mark the day. “Jerusalem Sunday and the season of Pentecost offer the perfect opportunity to help Episcopalians across the Church learn more about the lives and ministries of Christians in the Holy Land.”

Stay-tuned for links to resources - prayers, sermon notes, and publicity materials like the flyer above - to help Episcopalians and preachers across the Episcopal Church turn their gaze eastward toward Jerusalem on June 20.
AFEDJ offers a safe, secure channel to make gifts to support the work of the humanitarian institutions of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem.
American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem | 203-655-3575