The Friars Custody of the Holy Land
Despite the various difficulties throughout the centuries, the Franciscan presence in the Holy Land has always been maintained. This presence was established and received official status from the Church in 1342 when Pope Clement VI promulgated two Bulls: Gratias agimus (We give thanks) and Nuper carissimae (Some time ago). These two Bulls entrusted custody of the Holy Land to the Order of Friars Minor. In 1992, the 650th anniversary of these Bulls, the Pope John Paul II sent a letter to the Minister General of the Order, congratulating and exhorting the Friars to persevere in this task received from the Church.