About us

Protecting Holy Land Christians is an ecumenical campaign assembled by the Patriarch of Jerusalem, along with the Council of Patriarchs and Heads of Churches in Jerusalem, the body convening the Christian denominations in the Holy Land.

Patriarch Theophilos III
Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem

The Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem traces its lineage back to Pentecost, when James the brother of Jesus served as Bishop. Today, the Patriarchate runs 20 schools of all grades across the Holy Land, employing 800 teachers and other employees and educating 8,000 students, both Christian and Muslim. The church also runs clinics, providing critical support to all people in the region and supporting the diverse tapestry of Jerusalem. The Greek Orthodox Church faithfully welcomes visitors from around the globe to the holy sites it oversees and provides critical support for local, Christian-owned - and other - businesses in the Holy Land.

Patriarch Nourhan Manougian
Armenian Apostolic Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem

The Armenian Apostolic Orthodox Patriarchate is one of the main “guardians” of sacred sites in Jerusalem, together with the Greek Patriarchate and Custos. With a presence in the Holy Land since the 4th century, the church has a large presence in the Old City – known as the Armenian Quarter. Enshrined in their commitment to education and history, the Patriarchate oversees numerous schools, seminaries, and the oldest printing press in the Holy Land.

Patriarch Pierbattista Pizzaballa
Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem

The Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem embodies the representation of the Holy See in Jerusalem. As a part of their ministry, they run numerous vibrant youth groups, welcome pilgrims from around the world, and oversee 43 schools across the Holy Land. The Patriarchate also runs community-based projects that promote solidarity and harmony at the local level.

Fr. Francesco Patton
OFM, Custody of the Holy Land

Custody of the Holy Land supports and provides for pilgrims from around the world, offering spaces for prayer and supporting the Christian presence in Jerusalem. They do so by preserving holy places, the study of the Bible through geography and history, and supporting education initiatives in the Holy Land and around the world. Together with the Greek and Armenian Orthodox Patriarchates, the Custody regulates life and worship at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and Nativity Church in Bethlehem.

Archbishop Anba Antonious
Coptic Orthodox Patriarchate, Jerusalem

The Coptic Church in Jerusalem is a Christian community originating in Egypt but with an ancient history in Jerusalem dating back to the 4th century. The establishment of the Church is traced back to St Mark the Apostle. The Copts have a chapel in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and run schools in the Old City of Jerusalem.

Archbishop Gabriel Daho
Syrian Orthodox Patriarchate, Jerusalem

One of the oldest Christian communities in the region. The church is said to practice the oldest surviving liturgy in Christianity, and their services are run in a dialect of the language Jesus spoke, Aramaic. The Syrian Orthodox Church of St Mark is believed by many to be the location of the Upper Room.

Archbishop Aba Embakob
Ethiopian Orthodox Patriarchate, Jerusalem

The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church traces their legacy in the Holy Land to the meeting between the Ethiopian Queen of Sheba with King Solomon. Headquartered outside the Old City, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church welcomes pilgrims from around the world, but is specifically a place of refuge and prayer for many from East Africa.

Archbishop Yaser AL-Ayash
Greek-Melkite-Catholic Patriarchate, Jerusalem

The Greek-Melkite Catholic Church, which counts more than 10,000 members in the Patriarchal Exarchate of Jerusalem, comprises Catholics whose origins can be traced to the patriarchates of Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem. During the great Christological debates in the fifth century, those Christians in these patriarchal sees who remained loyal to the established church of the Byzantine Empire became known as Melkites, which in Arabic means king’s men. The Church oversees a guesthouse just inside Jaffa Gate in the Old City, welcoming pilgrims from a variety of Christian traditions and offering a space of hospitality and prayer.

Archbishop Mosa El-Hage
Maronite Patriarchal Exarchate

The presence of the Maronite Church in the Holy Land. An Eastern church in practice, Maronites are in full communion with the Roman Catholic Church. Although small in number, most Maronites in the Holy Land live in Galilee. Their Jerusalem headquarters is the Maronite Convent, just off Jaffa Gate and famed for its paintings of Lebanon’s cedar trees.

Archbishop Hosam Naoum
Episcopal Church of Jerusalem and the Middle East

Part of the Worldwide Anglican Communion, with a presence in Jerusalem since the 1840s. Based at the tranquil St George’s Cathedral outside the Old City, the Diocese has over 28 parishes and runs more than 30 institutions, including rehabilitation centres and hospitals, retirement homes, and schools, where it educates an average of 6,400 students every year.

Bishop Ibrahim Sani Azar
Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land

Rooted in the work of German and English missionaries from the 19th century. Since then, the Church has established five congregations across the region. It provides support for refugee families and operates four schools and other community programmes, including an Environmental Education Centre and Community Development Centre.

Reverend Camil Afram Antoine Semaan
Syrian Catholic Patriarchal Exarchate

A small community, their presence in Jerusalem is headquartered at St Thomas Church near Damascus Gate. Here, the Church runs a pilgrim centre and guesthouse.

Rt Rev. Joseph Nersès Zabbara
Armenian Catholic Patriarchal Exarchate

The Armenian Catholic Church keeps traditional Armenian liturgies but notably has been in communion with the Roman Catholic Church since 1742. Their headquarters are at the Third and Fourth Stations of the Cross on Via Dolorosa – Jesus falls for the first time and Jesus meets his mother – where they welcome faithful pilgrims year-round.