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17 October, 2011

In Memorium: Brother Donald Mansir

Graduation 2012Brother Donald Mansir, former Bethlehem University faculty member (September 1988–November 1993) and former Director of the Pontifical Mission of Palestine in Jerusalem, died of cancer, on October 8th, at John Muir Medical Center, Walnut Creek, California. Brother Donald was 62 years old.

A brother of the De La Salle Brothers of the Christian Schools, Brother Donald was a dedicated supporter of Bethlehem University. As a faculty member of Saint Mary's College of California, he accompanied many student groups to Bethlehem University and took a strong and active interest in the University. Brother Donald was also a member of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulcher-Northwestern Lieutenancy.

As Office Director of the Catholic Near East Welfare Association (CNEWA), where he started as the field projects coordinator for the Pontifical Mission’s Jerusalem office, Brother Donald supervised the expansion of the agency’s programs and services in Palestine and Israel, earning respect for his balanced but strong advocacy for justice and peace issues throughout the Holy Land. He was instrumental in the restoration of the dome of the Holy Sepulcher of Jerusalem, working with other great friends of the University, Msgr. Robert Stern and (then) Father Dennis Madden, to raise awareness about condition of the structure and encouraging pan-Christian action to restore the dome. Brother Donald was also a Vatican adviser on Palestinian issues and president of the Pontifical Mission for Palestine during the 1990's. As such, he was involved in Jordan, Palestine, Israel and Lebanon, assisting in diplomatic and humanitarian missions.

Students from Bethlehem University, who knew and loved Brother Donald, left touching messages, in his memory:

B’shara Nassar '11: Today one of my dearest and closest friends passed away. Br. Donald, you were such an inspiration to me; you were my teacher, my father and my friend. The world is a different place without you. R.I.P. Brother.

Jacoub Sleibi ’11: I had the pleasure of meeting Br. Donald more than 5 times, here in Bethlehem, since 2008, when I first met you and your students. Our last trip was in January, when we held a big party ... you had promised us to have another one next year. May your soul rest in peace!

Here, the eulogies given by Brother Ronald Gallagher and Brother Richard Lemberg, during the funeral liturgy of Brother Donald at Saint Mary's California, are available for viewing.

Click on one of the following links to learn more about Brother Donald's visits to Bethlehem University:



Bethlehem University Foundation
Phone: +1-240-241-4381
Fax: +1-240-553-7691
Beltsville, MD USA
Bethlehem University in the Holy Land
Phone: +972-2-274-1241
Fax: +972-2-274-4440
Bethlehem, Palestine