Cyprus: scholarships and new initiatives to support Christians in need on the island

Giacomo Pizzi19 August 2011

aiuta CiproScholarships for needy students, aid to families and support for women in difficulty: ATS pro Terra Sancta is launching the project Cyprus“, whose aim is to support, through the generosity of small private donors, the valuable services of the Custody of the Holy Land to the multiethnic community of the island. In Cyprus, there is a small Catholic community made up of adherents of the Maronite and Latin rites, the latter of whom are still aided today by the Franciscan friars of the Custody of the Holy Land.

The Catholic Church has over the past few years been enriched by new members coming from Asia and Africa, emigrant workers and those less well-off. It is specifically to support these individuals that ATS pro Terra Sancta has decided to donate part of the funds collected for the benefit of the Sri Lankan Sisters of Perpetual Help, who arrived in Cyprus several years ago at the invitation of Fr. Umberto Baratto to work with the friars in aiding the very large Asian community, which comes principally from the Philippines, Sri Lanka and India. This community consists for the most part of women who perform domestic chores for local families, and who have chosen to spend long periods far from their own countries and families. The sisters play an important role in dealing with the problems faced by these women, assisting them when they lose their employment or when they find themselves living in difficult situations, and taking them into their own shelter.

Thanks to the generous contribution of private supporters, who have decided to provide regular support to the Christian population of the island, ATS pro Terra Sancta is able to support young students from poor families, helping them to pay their school fees and allowing them to continue with their studies.