Posts Tagged ‘bethlehem’

Bethlehem Fundraiser in Caversham! – UPDATE

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THANKS TO ALL THOSE THAT VISITED US IN CAVERSHAM!

We had an extremely successful and enjoyable Saturday in Caversham. Between the sale in Church House, and the street stall outside Watrose, we were able to raise a significant amount for Friends of Wadi Fuqeen and raise awareness of issues in the West Bank and Palestine.

Reading PSC members did a wonderful job spreading cheer, good will and olive oil amongst the Xmas shoppers in Caversham, despite the cold weather!

We’ll be keeping all those that left their contact details informed about future events. Don’t forget our next meeting is at  8pm Thursday December 16th in Room 3 at RISC.

Please do get in touch if you have any questions or comments…

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Christmas 2009 in Bethlehem

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from JusticeWheels.org:

The sights and sounds of Bethlehem area during the Holiday Season.

Occupation forces doing what they do.

Palestinians and Internationals still refusing to give up and engaging in civil resistance by celebrating Christmas (despite Israel’s efforts to drive us out of our land).

The Shepherds’ Night Festival was put together by the Joint Advocacy Initiative of the YMCA/YWCA and the Palestinian Center for Rapprochement. The boycott of Israel must be our first priority to achieve justice

Bethlehem’s Christmas Blues

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Christmas ‘under siege’ in Bethlehem

As Christians around the world prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus, owners of tourism shops in Bethlehem aren’t seeing the booming business they’d expect this time of year.

Nour Odeh reports on how Israel’s illegal occupation may be keeping the West Bank’s tourism industry from thriving.

Don’t forget to contact a Church and organise a screening of Bethlehem: Hidden from View

Crib, Wise Men and Separation Wall

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Bethlehem’s modern nativity scene

A Palestinian worker makes souvenirs at the Giacaman olive wood factory in Bethlehem.

The shelves of Bethlehem’s tourist shops this winter are filled with the gifts you might expect. There are countless carved olive-wood crucifixes, angels and last suppers. But there are also unexpected nativity scenes complete with Joseph, Mary, crib, wise men and large Israeli concrete wall with military watchtower.

Israel’s vast separation barrier is at its most prominent around Bethlehem. Here it is a tall concrete wall that crosses into the occupied West Bank, runs up tight against the Palestinian city and cuts it off from much of its farmland. For Palestinians it has become one of the most striking symbols of Israel’s 42-year military occupation.

In some of these modern interpretations of the nativity the wall cuts through the centre of the scene, dividing wise men and camels from the crib. At the Holy Land Arts Museum, on Bethlehem’s Manager Square, the Giacaman family sells a different version, carved carefully to scale with three slices of wall and a looming watchtower. These pieces are not cheap: the full-size version, made from olive wood and with a thick Cyprus-wood watchtower nearly 50cm tall, sells for hundreds of pounds. They are made only to order.

“It’s important that people see what is really happening here,” said Elias Giacaman, 27. “We could have said the scale doesn’t matter, but I wanted it to be actually accurate to show the real image of the wall.”

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Plight and Flight of Palestinian Christians

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Palestinians can be Christians too

by Dr Hanan Chehata

Bethlehem Bible College sign_1379The “Palestinian problem” is usually perceived to be a “Muslim” problem; a conflict between the Jews and the Muslims and, for the most part, it is. However, it is easy to forget that amidst all of the politics and international wrangling there is another small but extremely important group who also have a deep rooted and valid claim to what is undoubtedly the most disputed “Holy Land” in the world. It may only constitute an extremely small minority of the entire population (estimates range from anywhere between 2.3%-1.5%)1 but the Palestinian Arab Christians living in Palestine/Israel also have a legitimate historical and spiritual claim to the land. After all, Palestine was the birthplace of Jesus Christ, the land in which he spent his short 33 year life and even shorter term of ministry and, according to Christianity, the place of his crucifixion and resurrection as well. Ever since the time of Jesus there has been a permanent presence of Christianity in the Holy Land. Not only is it a spiritual hub to which Christians from all over the world flock for pilgrimage and prayer, particularly during Christmas and Easter, but it has also been a home to countless Christians of numerous denominations for almost two thousand years.

However, in the last few decades there has been a perceptible exodus of Christians from the Holy Land. As the number of Jewish settler-colonists from all over the world has increased, the number of Christians living in the region has declined sharply. Whereas a few decades ago the number of Christians in Bethlehem, the city in which Jesus was born, was estimated to be around 70%, now they constitute well below a third of the total population.

There are many complicated reasons for this exodus, including the rise of Zionist extremism and economic hardships caused by discriminatory Israeli policies.

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Don’t forget to contact a Church and organise a screening of Bethlehem: Hidden from View

Christmas in the Holy Land

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The film above is from The Never Before Campaign for Palestine, watch more films at their Youtube channel.

Don’t forget to contact a Church and organise a screening of Bethlehem: Hidden from View

“A moment of truth” from Christian Palestinians

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A word of faith, hope and love from the heart of Palestinian suffering

We, a group of Christian Palestinians, after prayer, reflection and an exchange of opinion, cry out from within the suffering in our country, under the Israeli occupation, with a cry of hope in the absence of all hope,

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Santas Dilemma

Santa's Dilemma

Do your part by encouraging your local Church Group to show the film “Bethlehem: Hidden from View”

Bethlehem Checkpoint 4am

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Reading PSC are offering the film “Bethlehem: Hidden from View” to local Churches and groups to show, read more…

Bethlehem, Hidden From View

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From Canon of Jerusalem Garth Hewitt and the amos trust.

Bethlehem, Hidden From ViewReading PSC are offering the film to local Churches and Groups to screen over the Festive season, read more….

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