JERUSALEM (CWNews.com) - Restorers on Wednesday revealed a
renovated Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem just in time for Pope
John Paul II's visit to the city next week.
The Way of the Cross was restored over nine months using $1
million grant from the private Jerusalem Foundation that
cleaned up and smoothed over the road through Jerusalem to
the site of the Crucifixion. Although the project was not
initiated for the papal trip, organizers were pleased to
have it done just in time.
Chief architect Peter Bugod said the project was careful to
preserve it as "a road you have to make an effort to walk
on." Workers also installed lighted numbers pointing out
nine of the 14 stations marking the spots along the Way of
the Cross where Jesus was condemned, stumbled several
times, and was crucified. The last five stations are inside
the Church of the Holy Sepulcher.
The Holy Father will ride along the way in a special
vehicle that will carry him to the church on the site of
the Crucifixion and burial of Christ.
Meanwhile, Palestinian officials complained on Wednesday
that excessive Israeli security measures would prevent many
Palestinians from attending papal events and Masses. Faisal
Husseini, the top PLO official in Jerusalem, said Israel
was closing schools and stores and restricting who could
enter a hospital near the home where the Pope will stay
overnight in Arab East Jerusalem.