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Israel, Palestine, and the USA: What’s happening over there?  What does it mean to me?  What can/should I do about it?

March 21, 2012 by  
Filed under News & Events

Israel, Palestine, and the USA: What’s happening over there?  What does it mean to me?  What can/should I do about it?


An interfaith conference for concerned members of area congregations

Sunday, March 25, 1:00–5:30 p.m., co-sponsored by the Church of St. Martin-in-the-Fields and Christian-Jewish Allies, Philadelphia




12:30-1:10: Registration


1:15- 3:00: General Session: Briefing on the current situation in Israel, Palestine and the United States and implications for U.S. faith communities.


-       Introductions and Welcome

-       “The Big Picture” 17-minute video from the course “Steadfast Hope”

-       Small group exchange of reactions and views

-       Update, Mark Braverman, author of Fatal Embrace: Christians, Jews, and the   Search for Peace in the Holy Land, just returned from the West Bank

-       Panel Discussion with:

o Mark Braverman

o Michael Merryman-Lotze, Israel-Palestine Program Director, AFSC—International Programs

o Janelle Neubauer, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

o Susanne Hoder, United Methodist Kairos Response

o Hannah Schwarzschild, Co-Chair, Christian-Jewish Allies, Philadelphia

-       Questions, comments, and general discussion

-       Description of Break-out Workshops


3:00-3:30: Refreshments and Networking


3:30-4:45: Break-out Workshops


·         Educating Ourselves: options for learning about the occupation and how it is maintained…books, videos, courses, travel…approaches for congregations and groups. Facilitator: Mary Allen, Middle East Study Group of the Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania

·         Raising the Issue and Clarifying Distinctions:  Israel, Judaism, Zionism, and Anti-Semitism. Facilitator: Susan  J. Landau, (founding) member of Philadelphia  Jews for a Just Peace, Philly BDS, and Christian-Jewish Allies

·         Understanding U.S. Policies: how they undermine Israel’s long-term security… devastate Palestinian society… reinforce Middle Eastern antipathy to the U.S. Facilitators: Susan MacBride and Mark Braverman

·         Supporting Palestinian Civil Society: the many ways we can support Palestinian people and institutions (both faith-based and secular) and participate with them in maintaining hope for a just peace. Facilitators: Phoebe Griswold, American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem and the Rev. Sharline Fulton, St. Martin-in-the-Fields and Warden, 2010, St. Georges College, East Jerusalem

·         Non-Violence: Faith Communities in Action: This addresses the urgent call by Palestinian Christians for tangible actions by congregations to end the occupation, and the divestment initiatives proposed by United Methodists and Presbyterians in response to this call—a continuation of the traditions of Judeo-Christian and Muslim work for social justice. Facilitators: David Wildman, Executive Secretary for Human Rights & Racial Justice, United Methodist Church; Susanne Hoder, United Methodist Kairos Response; Michael Merryman-Lotze, AFSC; and Hannah Schwarzschild, C-J Allies.


4:45-5:15: Reconvene in Plenary Session


-       Facilitator Reports: Summary of results from Workshops, including recommendations for action going forward

-       Concluding remarks and Conference Adjournment


5:15-5:30: Facilitator feedback—discussion with conference organizers

Printable Conference Registration–2012-03-25


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