Nikodemus Schnabel, a member of the Benedictine order who looks over the Benedictine Abbey of the Dormition in Jerusalem, said he felt discrimination and violence against Christians in the city has rapidly increased over the years.
"There have always been forces that hate us but now they sit in the government. I get spat on almost every day. 20 years ago, it was maybe every six months,” Schnabel told KNA (Katholische Nachrichten-Agentur), a German Catholic news agency, last week.
Schnabel isn’t the first Christian in Israel to describe such a trend, as other communities reported similar events happening in the course of the year.
Back in February, members of the small Christian community in Jerusalem’s Old City described being under pressure from what they say was growing harassment and intimidation from violent Jewish ultra-nationalists.
Also, during the same month, a man identified by church authorities as a Jewish radical was detained after he allegedly vandalized a statue of Jesus in the Church of Flagellation – where Christ is said to have taken the cross after being condemned to death by crucifixion.
"This is the church commemorating the suffering of Jesus, and exactly here, doing that is something very bad, very bad," said Father Eugenio Alliata.
That incident followed others, including one in which graffiti reading "Death to Armenians" and "Death to Christians" were scrawled in Hebrew on the walls of the Armenian Convent of Saint James, last month. Israeli police said they stepped up patrols around Christian sites in the holy city.