The Custos of the Holy Land makes his solemn entry into the city of Jaffa, one of the oldest cities in the world. With a 4 million year old history, Jaffa is a city of a great importance for the Franciscan community.
The Custos of the Holy Land, Brother Francesco Patton, made a new solemn entry on Saturday, June 11, this time in the town of Jaffa, administratively incorporated in Tel Aviv in 1950. The ceremony, which was held together with the commemoration of the local patron St. Anthony, began with a procession that started at St. Peter’s Church.
Being a port city, the Franciscans settled here in the seventeenth century to house pilgrims who sailed into Jerusalem from around the world.
Located in the Mediterranean coast, Jaffa is one of the oldest cities in the world, with more than four million years of history. The biblical texts narrate that the prophet Jonah tried to flee to Tarshish from this port. During the storm, he was then thrown overboard and was swallowed by a big fish that rejected him back onto the beach, three days later.
The home of Simon the Tanner was also in Jaffa; Peter was staying in that place when he had a vision of a cloth that fell from the sky, containing unclean animals, and received the order to eat them. After this episode, Peter went to Caesarea Philippi, where he baptized Cornelius, the first pagan converted to Christianity.