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500 yards from the birthplace of Jesus Christ, one special door is open to poor and expectant mothers.

Bethlehem Hospital Is 'a Gift of Peace' in War-Torn Region

Michele Bowe, President of Holy Family Hospital of Bethlehem Foundation, describes the facility’s care of infants and women from Christian and Muslims communities in a recent article published in the National Catholic Register.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Michele Bowe is a member of the Order of Malta and the president of Holy Family Hospital of Bethlehem Foundation, the foundation that raises  funds to support a highly regarded infant and maternity hospital located in Bethlehem.

On Aug. 1, following a recent visit to the hospital, Bowe spoke with Joan Frawley Desmond, the Register’s senior editor, who is also a member of the Order of Malta, about the hospital’s efforts to affirm the inviolable dignity of its most vulnerable patients — some weighing as little as 1.5 lbs — and to serve both Christians and Muslims in a region that has witnessed decades of sectarian conflict and, most recently, experienced a resurgence of hostilities.

Click HERE to read the full article.

Blessed Pope John Paul II named Holy Family Hospital one of the top 100 priorities for the Roman Catholic Church in the new millennium.

Holy Family Hospital is the only hospital in the West Bank providing: neo-natal intensive care, over 45 well woman programs, and long term hospitalization for high risk mothers.  Outreach programs such as the diabetes clinic and mobile van care for populations that have been neglected and untreated.

Palestinian women have for decades faced a multitude of health risks: restricted access to medical services due to occupation, a deteriorating economic situation, traditional cultural beliefs, and lack of adequate services.

A Christian Presence in Palestine

Holy Family Hospital in Bethlehem is the premier maternity hospital and newborn critical care center for the Bethlehem region, four United Nations refugee camps and Bedouin encampments in the desert. Offering the poorest and most defenseless families a place of refuge, a place of promise and a place equipped to save their lives.

 

Did You Know?

  • The West Bank is 2,263 square miles, which is an area slightly smaller than the state of Delaware.
  • Holy Family Hospital employs 139 people. It is common that up to 18 members of a given family are dependent on a single salary of a hospital employee.
  • There are approximately 600 checkpoints in the West Bank, restricting movement between cities for Palestinian people.
  • According to UNRWA, 15% of Palestinian refugees in the West Bank live with diabetes (double the rate in the United States).Holy Family Hospital has one of the only Palestinian clinics which functions as a complete diabetic care center.

Our devotion has earned the respect of all communities in Palestine. Due to our excellent reputation and our respect for other’s dignity and religion, our share of all deliveries in the district of Bethlehem has increased from 37.3% to 59.5% in the last two years.”

- Dr. Jacques Keutgen, Former Director General, Caregivers