NEW YORK – Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York said he and those he traveled with to the Holy Land “feel safe and secure” in Bethlehem April 14, after they were forced to take shelter the night before when Iran launched a missile attack against Israel.

“This Sunday in Bethlehem all does seem calm and bright, and it is for us. We feel safe and secure,” Dolan said in an April 14 video posted to X.

“That wasn’t true in the middle of last night, when the air raid sirens went off and we had to go down and seek security at the [Notre Dame of Jerusalem Center], but right now things look good and we’re grateful for that,” Dolan said.

The Notre Dame of Jerusalem Center is a facility in Jerusalem that offers hospitality to pilgrims who come from all over the world to visit the Holy Land, according to its website.

Dolan will be in the Holy Land through Thursday, April 18, in his capacity as chair of the Catholic Near East Welfare Association (CNEWA), a papal agency established in 1926 to accompany and support Eastern churches in their humanitarian and pastoral work. A spokesperson for the archdiocese told Crux that Dolan is keeping to his planned schedule for the rest of the trip.

Dolan’s video update posted to X ran about one minute and thirty seconds. He didn’t address Iran’s attack on Israel other than to say that he and those he traveled with were safe in Bethlehem.

Dolan arrived in the Holy Land on April 12. While in the region, he will meet with various Israeli and Palestinian Christian, Jewish, and Muslim representatives. On the humanitarian side, he plans to visit the Paul VI Ephpheta Institute for the Hearing Impaired and the Aida Refugee Camp, both of which are in the West Bank; and the Home Notre Dame des Douleurs, a home for the elderly in Jerusalem.

Dolan also hopes to meet with the families of the hostages captured by Hamas, participate in a Sabbath meal, and visit with Israeli and Palestinian human rights groups, according to a previous news release from the Archdiocese of New York.

The trip is also to mark the 75th anniversary of the founding of the Pontifical Mission for Palestine. The organization, founded by Pope Pius XII in 1949, serves as CNEWA’s operating agency in the Middle East. Together, the two organization’s work through the local church to offer aid to all in need, regardless of their ethnic or religious background.

In the X video, posted just before 9:00 a.m. E.T., Dolan said he just finished Mass and was getting ready to venerate the site of the nativity of Jesus Christ.

Dolan said that on April 13 he visited a center run by Catholic sisters that takes in abandoned babies. He noted how they told him that every time they receive or find a new baby to care for “it is Christmas all over again, as another one of God’s children is born we have the honor to love them so tenderly and care for them.”

“Those are messages of inspiration that you get here in the Holy Land that I think have given people the resilience and the hope for which they’re famous,” Dolan said. “Happy Sunday.”

According to Israeli military spokespersons, Iran launched more than 300 ballistic missiles and drones against Israeli targets Saturday night, claiming that “99 percent” had been intercepted before reaching Israeli territory.

US officials said more than 70 drones and three ballistic missiles were intercepted by US Navy ships and military aircraft.

This piece has been updated with information from an Archdiocese of New York spokesperson.

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