The new project in the area “Memory and Culture” is called Books, Bridges of Peace.
It is a project that aims to enhance the cultural heritage represented by the Franciscan libraries in Jerusalem (the library in St. Saviour’s monastery and that of the Studium Biblicum Franciscanum) and of the other centers of the Custody of the Holy Land (in Egypt, Syria, Rhodes and Cyprus).
The project is focusing primarily on the following libraries of the Custody of the Holy Land:
- The library in St. Saviour’s Monastery, the oldest of the libraries of the Custody of the Holy Land, and undoubtedly one of the oldest in Jerusalem. It contains priceless manuscripts and incunables, in addition to rare collections, such as the rich collection of accounts of travelers to the Holy Land.
- The Studium Biblicum Franciscanum maintains a specialist library, open to the public, containing approximately 50,000 volumes and 420 journals. The principal sectors are: archaeology, biblical studies, patristics, Judaism, Ancient East and travels to the Holy Land.
- The library of the Mouski Convent in Cairo, part of the Franciscan Center for Christian Oriental Studies, is a point of reference for research on Arab and Eastern communities and Churches.
The primary objective of the project is to enhance, and make accessible, the immense library heritage of the Custody of the Holy Land, ensuring that this will continue to represent for future generations a tool for increasing knowledge, for dialogue and peace.