Tuesday, June 19, 2007

To the Middle East!

This summer I'm heading to Israel and Palestine.

Week 1 and 2:
I'm flying out by myself and meeting up with a team of people in Jerusalem to do some hands-on stuff. This will include work with Jewish kids, working in a hospital and street work as well as a couple of days touring around.

The ethos of the team seems quite pro-Israel/Zionist and I wanted to see both sides of the story so.....

Week 3 and 4:
When the first team leave I will travel to Bethlehem which is in Palestine (West Bank). I will meet up with some other people and work alongside Elias and other Palestinian Christians. We'll be meeting people involved in reconciliation work and spending time in orphanages and refugee camps.

I'm reading up on the history and current status of Israel/Palestine. I'm trying to maintain an open mind and will try and keep the blog updated as I process what I see there.


Walk said...

Blogger randomly sent me to your blog. I'm going to bookmark it and come back from time to time. I hope you can blog from Israel.

I was there in February 2006 and found there were internet cafes everywhere.

I will be interested in your take on the difference between Israel and Bethlehem -- that's not what I mean. I guess I mean the country Israel and the Palestinian Territory. I am not very political, and a supporter of Israel, but I was moved to tears by the Wall outside Bethlehem. I want peace and no walls and no terrorists.

a guy in Florida, USA

Anonymous said...

Why on your own?....and why this zone? ( The answer 'why not' will not be acceptable!!!!.....SPILL!)

Will u be followin the star upon ur donkey twards de Beth- of- le -hem??...(cudnt resist?!...soz)

What about the drums?....

BIG IT UP FOR THE LIFE OF A TEACHER....i gotta admit...its tough...eh?1...:o) jan

dave wiggins said...

a girl from Jerusalem called round our doors yesterday selling paintings, so as neil clammed up, i got her number for you.

Anonymous said...

Good for you John, that sounds great!

After living in Turkey, having known some Palestinians and generally loving Muslem people, I'm afraid my view is probably not 'balanced'... so it will be very interesting to hear how you feel about the situation after spending time among both communities. Of course as in all these conflicts, there is pain, hurt and injustice on both sides and no easy answers.
Go in peace!


Sheena said...

Hey John, I gave Dave some stuff for u to flick through if u have a chance before you go including a couple of dvds that are worth a watch.
hopefully see you before you go. will look fwd to hearing more!
take care,

Ivonne said...

Very exciting, John! (Must say I am feeling a little jelaous...) Visiting the middle-east is a life changing experience, being able to do humanitarian aid work there must be even more so. I pray for protection and every blessing upon this experience of yours: may you walk amongst constant epiphanies of the divine.

Anonymous said...

Balls of steel. The place appears to be in constant turmoil. Stay safe.

Jen said...

I visited it a few years ago-it's well worth it. Lots of historic beauty spoiled by turmoil. Praying for yaxo

Molar said...

Nice one John. Takes a lot of courage to go there, but even more to keep an open mind. It is refreshing to hear of Christian's who aren't always so pro-Zionist. I will say no more, other than I look forward to hearing/reading your thoughts on the trip.


J-Mac said...

Walk/Nina/Molar: My opinions probably aren't that balanced either because of the 2 people from Palsestine that I have met. However, I'm trying to go without preconceptions.

Nina, I wish you would start blogging!

Sheena: Thanks! and thanks for kick-starting this!

Jan: Why not?