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Vatican moves forward on family center in Nazareth

Multi-million-euro project the brainchild of John Paul II

16 April, 16:29
Vatican moves forward on family center in Nazareth (ANSA) - Vatican City, April 16 - John Paul II's long-awaited family center in Nazareth is about to get off the ground, according to the Vatican on Tuesday. The 12-million-euro structure has been on paper since the late pope first announced his plan to build it in 1997 at World Family Day in Rio de Janeiro. But flare-ups in regional violence around the town Jesus called home forced organizers to suspend their efforts. Now the Vatican says the International Family Center of Nazareth should be built in two and a half years.

"It will be a center for family spirituality, a permanent observatory for pastoring families and offering material support to families in need," said Bishop Vincenzo Paglia, president of the pontifical council for the family. The bishop of Nazareth, Giacinto Marcuzzo, said the project could be an instrument for peace in the region. "Peace between states, peoples and religions begins with peace within the individual and the family," he said. (photo: John Paul II in Rio de Janeiro, 1997)