11 January 2012
The rooftop prayer service at the Good Samaritan Center in Jerusalem’s Old City.
(photo: J. Carrier)
In November 2009, writer Hannah Foighel described the work of the Elderly Community Support Center, also known as the Good Samaritan Center, in Jerusalem:
The Good Samaritan Center was founded in 2000 and received recognition as a nonprofit three years later. Since 2005, the center has been based in a former hostel owned by the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate in the heart of the Christian Quarter, but Raja Salameh emphasizes that the center does not belong to any one church. Rather, it provides services for all those who live in the city’s ancient Christian Quarter.
“We serve the Lord in a good way,” he says, adding that seven Muslim families who live in the quarter also use the services of the center.
The center receives funding from the Finnish government, CNEWA-Pontifical Mission, international groups and charities....
...The Good Samaritan Center has three floors. The ground floor functions as a club, an entertainment center of sorts with a television, a number of card tables and board games. The second floor houses a clinic-like facility and the center’s administrative offices. A flat roof is the center’s third floor and it is Mr. Salameh’s pride and dream. The roof is at the same level as the lead-covered domes of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, which is just two buildings away. In the distance, one can see the Mount of Olives.
Here prayers are conducted each Monday.
“When we started the center, all the churches were a bit skeptical. Now they all want to come here to conduct prayers and celebrate liturgies,” he adds. “A few weeks ago, the former Latin patriarch, Archbishop Michel Sabah, led a prayer service. The Greek Orthodox patriarch has been here and next week we will have a priest from Lebanon.”
To read more, check out Jerusalem’s Good Samaritans.
Tags: Jerusalem Health Care Caring for the Elderly Pensioners