Israel 2016 – Part 7

More about the conference Christ at the Checkpoint 4, with its subtitle “The Gospel in the Face of Religious Extremism.”

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St. George killing the dragon is a favorite theme in religious art in this region. This is on the wall of the hotel, showing, I suppose, that the owner is a Christian in some sense. Overhead lights reflected in the glass cover of the piece distract from the effectiveness of this slide, but I liked the art and decided to include it anyway.

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Walter, from North America, is a volunteer at Bethlehem Bible College (BBC) and seeks to be creative in his witness against violence. During parts of past year, tear gas was hurled by Israeli soldiers every day in the streets and landed on the BBC property. Walter collected the spent canisters, scrubbed them carefully and made Christmas ornaments, in a venture he calls Peace Parcels.  Come to my house, and I will show you the ones I bought.

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BBC had a gift shop, with items at fair market price, to support the artisans who made them. And how could you have crafts in Bethlehem without having olive wood?

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John Azumah, originally from Ghana, was one of the speakers. Currently a professor at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, GA, he was formerly the director of the Centre of Islamic Studies at London Theological School, and from his service there he is acquainted with Brethren in Christ persons Jay Smith, Carmen Schultz, Paul Kiss and others.

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On the right is Byron Rempel-Buckwalter from Winnipeg, a volunteer, along with his wife Melita, at BBC. On the left is Jonathan Kuttab, a Palestinian attorney and recognized authority on human rights and Palestinian and Israeli affairs.He grew up in Jerusalem, graduated from Messiah College, and lives part of the year in Lancaster County, PA, and part of it in Israel-Palestine.

Christians can work for peace in so many ways and so many places.

 

 

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