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GLOBAL MOVEMENT FOR A CULTURE OF PEACE

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Four Opportunities to Visit the Holy Land
an article by Elias S. Deis, Holy Land Trust

1. Fall Olive Harvest Pilgrimage, October 6 -20, 2007

Join us on a journey in the Holy Land from October 6 - 20, 2007 and take part in the olive harvest which is an integral part of the very fabric of life in Palestine and Israel. When the olive harvesting season begins, family members, to this day, make an effort to travel to one another from all over the country to help in the olive harvest. Olives are picked by hand as they have been for thousands of years. The olive tree is a powerful symbol of cooperation between peoples.

We will also discover the ancient church as we take an historical pilgrimage in the footsteps of Jesus, meeting with Jewish and Palestinian organizations that are working for peace and seeking ways of building bridges of peace through interfaith dialogue.

www.middleeastfellowship.org/travel/olive_harvest.

2. Palestine Summer Encounter 2007, starting May 24th, 2007

A two month Arabic-training and volunteer program to create a dialogue between Palestinians and members of the global community. During the program, participants will learn beginner or intermediate conversational Arabic through language immersion and class and partner with Palestinian non-profit organizations as a volunteer. See the links for more detailed information: www.middleeastfellowship.org/pse2007.

3. Northwest Churches Pilgrimage, October 20th-November 2nd

Join us on a journey to the Holy Land as we discover the ancient (and still living!) church by taking an historical pilgrimage in the footsteps of Jesus, learning to build relationships of encouragement and responding as He would to the needs of the people. This will be a rich cultural experience as we meet local families, stay in their homes, taste fabulous Middle Eastern delicacies and receive their incredible hospitality. Vital service opportunities will be incorporated throughout the schedule.

The deadline to register is July 1st, 2007. For information: www.middleeastfellowship.org/travel/northwest_churches.

4. 1st Annual Home Rebuilding Camp in Bethlehem, 1 July 2007 15 July 2007

* Dedicate two weeks this summer to help rebuild a demolished home...
* Give hope back to a family whose house has been destroyed...
* Work hand in hand with Palestinians, Israelis and Internationals for justice. For information, see http://www.middleeastfellowship.org/travel/rebuilding_homes.

Further information on all four campaigns is available from the author at eliasd81@yahoo.com or the website for the Holyland Trust.

DISCUSSION

Question(s) related to this article:


How can a culture of peace be established in the Middle East?,

What are the advantages of working in the Holy Land?,

Jewish-Palestinian dialogue, How is dialogue diffeent from conversation, discussion or debate?

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LATEST READER COMMENT:

Here is another view of the Hamas/Fatah agreement, sent to CPNN by the Palestinian peace activist, Mazin Qumsiyeh:

People asked me about the latest "reconciliation" agreement between Fatah and Hamas. Most Palestinians here are skeptical of the sincerity of leadership in Fatah and Hamas and most still think these leaders are driven by narrow factional and personal interests than by interest of Palestine; noticeably absent was the popular Front For the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), the largest secular faction after Fatah. Women leaders also complained about the exclusion of women voices and youth were also absent as most of those politicians are my age or older. In my talks (and I give several every week to visiting delegations and local people), I emphasize that people must wake up and push politicians to do the right thing. That is how history changes: via people especially youth and women. Of course, many wish that politicians show some leadership for positive change but we the people have to act. Meanwhile, we have an ongoing slow genocide of the Palestinian people. 7.4 million are refugees/displaced people and that number keeps growing. . ...more.


This report was posted on April 14, 2007.