The pilgrim house in Bethlehem helps local residents of all religions

© RIA Novosti / Zaman of Ramazanov the center of the Palestinian city of Bethlehem. Archival photoThe pilgrim house in Bethlehem helps local residents of all religions© RIA Novosti / Zaman Ramazanov

The pilgrim house in Bethlehem, outdoor Russian spiritual mission, in addition to the accommodation of the pilgrims provides assistance to needy local residents, regardless of their religion, said in an interview with RIA Novosti, Building super, Yuri Romashuk.

The Russian ecclesiastical mission in Jerusalem, founded by Archimandrite Antonin (Kapustin), operating since 1848. Because of the ban on the purchase of real estate by foreigners in force in the Ottoman Empire, the Archimandrite had to resort to the local Arab-Christian Jacob Khalebi, which acquired the land and then passed them to the Russian ecclesiastical mission, said Romashuk.

According to him, the pilgrim house has been welcoming guests since 2003. «Our main mission is to take pilgrims to the Holy Land,» — said the Manager, adding that the house helps Russian ecclesiastical mission and the Russian Federation provides assistance in the construction of schools, roads and cultural centers in Bethlehem.

Romashuk talked about the fact that Russia provided training for graduates of local schools at Russian universities. «Only from Bethlehem each year are sent 120-150 graduates of grade 12 to study in Russia. Of course, it is desirable to have good grades. Five years later they come back – doctors, engineers – and help their country,» — said Romashuk.

According to him, special problems in its activities, the mission does not feel, but had some small difficulties with food pilgrims. «The cooks here is from Russia. You know, Russian food and Arabic are two different things. Pilgrim comes in and immediately sour – lemon and salt it too much,» says the Manager of the hotel.

He noted that of other spiritual missions «no competition» for the position of the Orthodox Church in Bethlehem strong. «Our goal is religious, she is and will be. The mission helps and Arabs in need, and Jews, and Muslims – all helps,» — said Romashuk.

The President of the United States Donald trump had previously announced the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and signed a document about transferring the U.S. Embassy from tel Aviv to Jerusalem. This caused a negative reaction from many countries, primarily countries in the Middle East and Palestine. On Sunday, Israeli military armored personnel carrier dispersed Palestinian protesters in Bethlehem near the border with Israel.

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