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Jakarta Post

The Blessed Hills of Dili

  • Dylan Amirio

    The Jakarta Post

Dili, Timor Leste   /   Sat, July 23 2016   /  09:22 am

Papal wave: Pope John Paul II's statue waves in the direction of the sea.Timor Leste is probably not on the average list when it comes to destinations for spiritual tourism, or even tourism in general.Most people, particularly Indonesians, view Timor Leste only as that little country that struggled and endured the brutal and murderous 30-plus year occupation by Indonesia’s Soeharto regime.

Timor Leste separated from Indonesia in 1999 and became a new country in 2002. Interestingly, Dili, the capital, emanates a strong aura that radiates the population’s spirituality to visitors.

It seems that the people of Dili seek refuge in their faith to survive amid difficult conditions in a relatively young country with an underdeveloped economy and infrastructure.

Timor Leste is Southeast Asia’s second largest Roman Catholic country after the Philippines. Ninety-six per...