Posts made in February, 2020

This Syrian Catholic priest was kidnapped and tortured by ISIS.

Posted on Feb 21, 2020

He still has hope in humanity.

by Stephanie Saldaña

Photo: Father Jacques MouradIt became clear that I would need to follow the Rev. Jacques Mourad around all day. To the kitchen, where he was preparing kebab with eggplants or demonstrating how to cut onions just so or washing dishes. To the chapel, where he was picking away wax collecting on candle holders. To the classrooms, where he was nodding his head as nuns from India attempted to recite the Mass in Arabic that he has spent months teaching them. To the door, which he was always leaning out of, calling to someone in the street.

There was nothing too small, or nothing small enough, to occupy Father Jacques, for he believed that God was captured best in simplicity. The woman called by name. The prayer in the chapel, where only two of us had gathered beneath the rising Iraqi sunlight. The coffee filled exactly to the correct level.

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Areej Masoud: How a Palestinian Christian deals with challenges on her identity

Posted on Feb 21, 2020

In a two-minute video Palestinian Christian Areej Masoud tells that she has learned to live both her Palestinian and Christian identity despite the challenges.

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Tell Congress to oppose the Trump administration’s “peace plan” for Israel/Palestine

Posted on Feb 21, 2020

Organizations in the Faith Forum on Middle East Policy send out action alerts monthly, focusing on different issues so that members of Congress hear consistently that their constituents support a just and lasting resolution to the Palestinian and Israeli conflict.

Thursday, February 20, 2020

The Trump administration has released its “plan” for the future of Palestine and Israel—a document that cannot truly be called a “peace plan.” In releasing this plan, the U.S. government has demonstrated support for Israeli control over all of Jerusalem, Israeli sovereignty over Israeli settlements in the West Bank, the Israeli annexation of the Jordan Valley, and the continued isolation of Gaza.

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New humanitarian crisis in Syria

Posted on Feb 21, 2020

February 20, 2020
The advance of the government army into northwest Syria has continued in recent weeks. At the center of international attention is the province of Idlib, and the western suburbs of Aleppo.

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Israel confiscates school in Susiyah

Posted on Feb 20, 2020

by Cody O’Rourke

On February 19, 2020, the Israeli Civil Administration confiscated a schoolhouse from the village of Susiya in the South Hebron Hills. These Israeli attacks on the basic infrastructure that serves the Palestinian children of Susiya is not simply a violation of human rights, but a message to the community: Leave your village.

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WCC welcomes Grand Mufti of Egypt

Posted on Feb 20, 2020

20 February 2020

World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit received Egypt’s Grand Mufti Shawki Ibrahim Abdel-Karim in the Ecumenical Centre, Geneva, Switzerland. In their meeting, the religious leaders engaged in in-depth dialogue to promote peaceful relations among diverse communities, religious freedom, values for equal citizenship and key aspects of peacebuilding and interreligious dialogue, paying special attention to combating religious extremism leading to violence in many parts of the world.

Abdel-Karim pointed out the common roots and experiences of both Muslims and Christians living together for centuries in Egypt, which he said should be the basis of a constructive engagement for promoting peaceful relations.

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Kairos for Creation: Confessing Hope for the Earth – The Wuppertal Call

Posted on Feb 18, 2020

Professor Mazin Qumsiyeh, whose work includes Palestine Institute for Biodiversity and Sustainability, recommended the following in his Palestinian Christians newsletter.

25 June 2019

Kairos for Creation – Confessing Hope for the Earth
The Wuppertal Call

“If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, pray, seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land” – 2 Chron. 7:14.

“If anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation” – 2 Cor. 5:17-18


From 16 to 19 June 2019, 52 participants from 22 countries and from different confessional and faith traditions gathered in Wuppertal, Germany for a conference entitled “Together towards eco-theologies, ethics of sustainability and eco-friendly churches”.* In Wuppertal we were reminded of the courageous confession of faith articulated in the Barmen Declaration (1934) against the totalitarian, inhuman and racist ideology of the time. Barmen continues to encourage us today for “a joyful liberation from the godless ties of this world for free grateful service to his creatures” (Barmen 2).

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Christian Zionist archaeology: A tool of Palestinian subjugation

Posted on Feb 18, 2020

Archaeological projects in Palestine led by US evangelical Christians contribute to Palestinian dispossession.

Image: Tourists visit the archaeological site of Tel Shiloh in the West Bank, March 12, 2019 [File: AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner]

Tourists visit the archaeological site of Tel Shiloh in the West Bank, March 12, 2019 [File: AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner]

by Mimi Kirk, Mimi Kirk, Managing Director of The Palestinian Policy Network, Al-Shabaka
16 Feb 2020

About 20 kilometres (12.4 miles) north of Ramallah in the occupied West Bank, just west of the Israeli settlement Shiloh, lies Tel Shiloh, an archaeological site that attracts tens of thousands of evangelical Christians every year.

There, Scott Stripling, an evangelical pastor from Texas, heads a dig in search of remnants of the biblical tabernacle – a portable dwelling containing a chest holding the two stone tablets of the Ten Commandments.

In a recent interview with the Times of Israel, Stripling says his latest find – three horns that may have adorned an altar – supports his claim that Tel Shiloh is the site of the dwelling.

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Briefly: The Role of Jesus in Islam

Posted on Feb 15, 2020

In her article about Netflix’s ‘Messiah’ testing the faith of its characters (and its audience), Isabelle Senechal turns to experts regarding the role of Jesus in Isalm, and she also looks at how Muslims are depicted in the entertainment media.

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Theologies among Palestinian Christians within Palestine and Israel

Posted on Feb 14, 2020

Sabeel’s 1st International Gathering, held at the beginning of December 2019 in Bethlehem brought together a number of organisations including: Al Liqa, Bethlehem Bible College, Kairos Palestine, Dar al Kalima University College, and Musalaha Ministry of Reconciliation. These organisations have grown out of this need for Palestinians to rise with a new theology. Sabeel are thankful for the organisations for being willing to participate in this new way of bringing people together.

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