Intra-Faith

Author: Sharon Azran/B’Tselem. Creative Commons license, from Wikimedia Commons. Source: http://www.btselem.org/photoblog/20140115_hebron

“There is no such thing as Palestine!”–Dispatch from Palestine

“You can’t teach me anything about Europeans,” once commented the deputy mayor of Jerusalem. Europeans had killed his father. “You can’t teach me anything about Palestinians.” Palestinians had killed his mother. The deputy mayor embodied a common sentiment among Zionists, many of whom had suffered dear losses to one or another enemy of the Jewish […]

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Rodolfo_Acquaviva_diskutiert_mit_dem_Großmogul

Service, Social Media, and the Self – Part 2

The first part of this sermon can be found here. —- So far, I have talked about my experiences, because that’s all I can talk about. It would be wrong for me to tell you what your feelings are or should be. The idea of human engagement is a humbling one as you realize how […]

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Rodolfo_Acquaviva_diskutiert_mit_dem_Großmogul

Service, Social Media, and the Self – Part 1

Towards the end of October, I posted a call to action from a sermon I delivered, to help us think about gratitude and our obligations to one another. Here is an edited version of that sermon. — Today’s wa’ez is brought to you by the number “5” and the letter “P.” I fondly remember the […]

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English: Walaja Barrier 2011. Author Wickey-nl. Creative Commons license. 31 March 2014. Source: Own work, based on http://www.ochaopt.org/documents/ocha_opt_the_closure_map_2011_12_21_bethlehem.pdf, published by United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHAoPt). http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Walaja_Barrier_2011.jpg

“You are an ambassador”–Dispatch from Palestine

We drive along the barbed electric fence that surrounds the Israeli settlement of Har Gilo.  We are headed to the Walajah valley of the Palestinian territory. The valleys are deep and lush with pine trees and olive groves, steppes cut into the hillsides with round white stones. The land here has been largely confiscated by […]

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http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3AA_woman_of_Samaria_c1912.jpg. By unattributed [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.

Life is Hard Here — Dispatch from Palestine

The heavy rain doused the aluminum-roofed shack. Rivulets carved paths through the thick mud around the house. But inside, the house was cozy, comfortable. Thick carpets and bouncy velvet couches make this hard Palestinian life easier. Because life is hard here. This woman has three children and all three of them are disabled with Berardinelli […]

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http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3AJewish_Settlement_Police.jpg. Source: Yair Malachi, circa 1942

The Beginning of a Settlement — Dispatch from Palestine

Mahmoud’s family lives one Palestinian hill over from a newly-forming illegal Jewish settlement. Six Jewish settlers arrived about a year ago with tents and made a primitive campsite. All year they prayed on the hill in religious pilgrimage. All settlements start this way. The original owner has a claim on this land and papers originating […]

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Source: Wikimedia Commons. Public Domain.

Progressives, Prooftexts, and the Sermon on the Mount

It’s not easy to correct the errors of your tradition. The absolute ‘No!’ that seems like the most radical course too often ends up preserving the underlying logic of what you’re trying to correct. (No one thinks more like a fundamentalist than an anti-fundamentalist.) This is especially important for Christians to remember when interpreting the Sermon on the Mount. Jesus’ sharp […]

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Taken by author Jenn Lindsay in Palestine

“Come and see, then go and tell”–Dispatch from Palestine

The Tent of Nations is an organic farm on a long narrow strip of Palestinian land that has held its deed since 1917, through four occupations: Turkish, British, Jordanian, and Israeli. It is placed in the middle of a circle of 5 Israeli settlements. The farmers mark the last clash with Israeli military forces in […]

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Shirim in her field near Husan Village, taken by author Jenn Lindsay

“Just Tell Our Story” — Dispatch from Palestine

We met Shirim at her family’s olive grove plot. It falls just outside the Betar Illit settlement. More accurately, it falls on the entire hill but the settlement imposed itself right on top of the farmland that has belonged to her family for five generations. She is forbidden to access her land beyond the current […]

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Warming Up Thanksgiving Dinner

I recently gave a wa’ez (sermon) on social media, service, and faith. The organizing conceit was Sesame Street, and ideas revolved around the number 5 and the letter “P.” At the end, I had five “asks” I wanted my audience to commit to, and the feedback has been positive. While I’m editing the text to […]

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