Gaza Parish Priest in the UK to raise the plight of Christians in the Holy Land

Father Gabriel Romanelli, the Parish Priest of Holy Family Catholic Parish in Gaza, is in London for a week-long visit to the United Kingdom, facilitated by the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales.

Father Romanelli is in the UK to thank the Catholic Bishops of England, Wales and Scotland for their support and solidarity, and to raise up the plight of the Christian community in Gaza and the wider Holy Land.

He has already met with Archbishop Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, at Lambeth Palace, and will meet with senior Catholic leaders including Cardinal Vincent Nichols, President of the Bishops’ Conference, and Archbishop John Wilson of Southwark.

His visit also includes a one-to-one meeting with Bishop Nicholas Hudson, the new Chair of the International Affairs Department and Chair of the Holy Land Coordination.

Father Romanelli will also meet with Christian charities and organisations devoted to alleviating the suffering of the peoples of the Holy Land.

On Tuesday, 23rd April, Bishop Hudson accompanied Father Romanelli to the Houses of Parliament to brief MPs and shed light on the challenges faced by Christians in the Holy Land following the 7 October Hamas terror attack and the subsequent bombardment of the Gaza Strip by Israel.

The cross-party group of MPs and Peers highlighted the ongoing work of Parliament in trying to get more humanitarian aid delivered to the people of Gaza.

Despite being stranded in Jerusalem due to the conflict, Father Romanelli has maintained constant communication with his parishioners. He has also spoken to Pope Francis, who shows a deep ongoing prayerful concern for those sheltering in the compound of the Holy Family, and has explained that after several months of war, the people are “tired, sad, and heartbroken”.

After his visit to London, he will then to Glasgow to meet with Archbishop Wiliam Nolan, the Archbishop of Glasgow.