St. Francis Str. 1
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|The New Custos of the Holy Land
By decree of the Holy See (15.05.2004) Fr. Pierbattista Pizzaballa ofm, has been nominated as the new Custos of the Custody of the Holy Land. He replaces the outgoing Custos Fr. Giovanni Battistelli ofm who served in this office for the past six years. Br. Pizzaballa is one of the youngest elected for this office. According to the local tradition the new Custos will make a solemn entry into Jerusalem on June 2nd, at the Holy Sepulchre on the 3rd of June, Bethlehem on the 4th and Nazareth on the 7th.
Fr. Pierbattista Pizzaballa ofm, was born of Peter and Maria Tadini at Cologno al Serio (Italy), in the diocese of Bergamo on 21 April 1965. He entered into novitiate on 22nd September 1984 (La Verna). He was simply professed on 7th September 1985, solemnly professed on 14th October 1989 and ordained priest on the 15th September 1990.
He did his initial formation in the OFM colleges of the Emilia-Romagna and obtained his BA in theology in 1990 (Pontificium Atheneum Antonianum under prof. M. Adinolfi). He proceeded his studies for Licentiate in Theoloogy with biblical specialization at the Studium Biblicum Franciscanum of Jerusalem 1990-1993, a Licence he obtained in 1993 under the guidance of prof. A. Nicacci. He attended courses of modern hebrew language in Jerusalem (1993-1994) and took specialization courses in semitic languages at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem (1995-1999). He is preparing his doctorate at the Studium Biblicum Franciscanum with a research on "The Alliance in the land of Moab, A Historic-literary analysis of Dt. 29-30" (under the guidance of prof. A. Rofè and A. Niccacci). He published with M. Pazzini (1995) the Rite of the Mass in Hebrew (Seder seudat ha adon. Ordo Missae hebraice). He also transalted and edited the liturgical texts in hebrew for the use of the catholic communities of hebrew language. Since 1998 is assistant professor at the Studium Biblicum Franciscanum and the Studium Theologicum Hierosolymitanum teaching biblical Hebrew and Judaism. He was Parish vicar for the catholic community of hebrew language in Jerisalem. He was also general assistant to H. E. Mons. Jean-Baptiste Gourion, Auxiliary bishop of the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem for the pastoral care of the hebrew speaking catholics in Israel. Since 2001 he was superior of the Friary of Sts. Joachim and Anne in Jerusalem. President of the Commission for misisonary Evangelisation and member of the Commisison for Judaism and Islam of the Custody of the Holy Land.
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