Were you aware of this news item?
Israeli-Waqf Talks Expected to be Concluded by Year End
Talks to resolve differences between the Waqf Authority and Israel relating to the situation at the Haram A-Sharif/Temple Mount could be concluded by the end of the year. In a joint statement issued Thursday after the conclusion of a plenary meeting at the Al-Azhar University in Egypt of the Bilateral Permanent Working Commission set up to resolve the outstanding issues regarding the implementation of the Oslo Accords vis a vis religious freedom, the Waqf and Israel said the “significant progress was made and the parties committed themselves to accelerate negotiations on the remaining issues which include the granting of religious expression to Jews, and also other non-Muslims on the Temple Mount, outside Islamic buildings .”
Naw, that was all wrong.
Here's the real news:-
Israeli-Holy See Talks Expected to be Concluded by Year End
Talks to resolve differences between the Holy See and Israel could be concluded by the end of the year. In a joint statement issued Thursday after the conclusion of a plenary meeting at the Vatican of the Bilateral Permanent Working Commission set up to resolve these outstanding issues, the Holy See and Israel said the “significant progress was made and the parties committed themselves to accelerate negotiations on the remaining issues.”
I had posted earlier on the agreement which would permit Catholic Mass at the Mount Zion complex which was carried by a PR facilitator. By the way, I am having doubts since I can not find corroboration.
But the Franciscans are still upset at other matters, like this odd item:-
Franciscans in the Holy Land Continue “Unwelcome Ritual” of Honoring the Cross of Jesus
May 28, 2013
Franciscans in the Holy Land continued their time-honored tradition of celebrating the Finding of the Cross this year despite strong opposition by Jews and Muslims. The annual feast included a Mass at the Basilica of the Holy Sepulcher and a procession with a piece of the cross that held the crucified body of Christ.
although they are aware of the intricacies of the difficulties:
Referring to his church's desire to regain rights to the traditional site of the Last Supper on Mount Zion, which it lost 500 years ago and which sits on top of the traditional tomb of King David, [custos of holy sites on behalf of the Vatican, Father Pierbattista] Pizzaballa said he is not seeking a change in the status quo. "But Jerusalem teaches us to you can't take any decision alone," he added. "You need the other [party]. That's the difficulty and the beauty of Jerusalem."
By the way, here is how the Franciscans detail their "historical rights"
Holy Land Custody History
The association of the Franciscans with the Holy Land is one that began many years ago and has particular significance. Having reached Egypt, St. Francis himself embarked for St. John of Acre in 1219, intending to reach Jerusalem. Although he did not succeed in this, he was able to lay the foundations for a Franciscan presence...A general chapter of the order, held at the Portiuncola near Assisi in 1217, had already established a province of the Holy Land...In 1291, the city of St. John of Acre, the last Crusader stronghold in the Holy Land, fell to the Muslims. Nevertheless, the Franciscans, who had taken refuge in Cyprus, the seat of the order's eastern province, continued to program and carry out by all possible means an apostolate in Jerusalem and at other sanctuaries in Palestine. In spite of many obstacles and difficulties, a Franciscan presence at the Holy Sepulcher between 1322 and 1327 was recorded in history, a presence which was specifically requested by Pope John XXII.
...a definitive return to the Holy Land with legal possession of certain sanctuaries...was made possible by the rulers of Naples, Roberto d’Angiò and Sancia di Maiorca. In 1333, through the good offices of Fr. Ruggero Garini, the order acquired from the Sultan of Egypt the Cenacle as well as the right to liturgical celebrations in the Basilica of the Holy Sepulcher...In 1342, Pope Clement VI, through the bulls Gratias Agimus and Nuper Carissimae, confirmed the rulings of Naples and made possible the creation of a new entity: the Custody of the Holy Land. The events of 1342 were decisive in the development of the local church, making possible the eventual reestablishment in 1847 of the Latin Patriarchate...The Custody of the Holy Land had its seat at the convent of Mount Zion, next to the Cenacle, until 1551, in which year the Friars were expelled by the Turks. However, from 1560 until today, the seat of the custody of the Holy Land has been at the convent of St. Savior in Jerusalem.
In the 16th century, the arrival in the Holy Land of the Greeks, supported by the sultans, gave rise to the painful issue of the "question of the holy places", which saw the Franciscans in a spirited defense of their continued possession of them. A period of unhappiness ended in 1852, when an edict from the Ottoman Empire established what has become known as the "status quo nunc", which still regulates today ownership and rights of the different Christian communities.
And this is how true religious freedom works out (and how bad off Jews are regarding the Temple Mount):
The Franciscan calling in the Holy Land includes three principal elements:
Prayer in the Holy Places.
The daily prayer of the friars in the Holy Places is a reminder to all that these places are not museums. Each of them commemorates a particular moment in the life of Christ and of His disciples. Praying there and commemorating the Salvation Story means making Christ Himself present.
The task of the Franciscans is not only to support pilgrims from all over the world during their stay in the Holy Land but also to assist them in their walk of faith.
Looking after Christians and serving the poor.