Show solidarity with our Christian brothers and sisters in the Holy Land
HCEF invites American churches to partner with Holy Land churches. A partnership with a Church in the Holy Land fosters an active, mutual, and on-going relationship between a church in the US and a church in the land of Christ’s birth. Partnerships are an opportunity to bond spiritually, culturally, and economically with the Mother Church, the living roots of Christianity, in the land where Jesus was born, died, and was resurrected. American Christians experience the rich traditions and liturgies of the Eastern Christians. Partnerships are blessings for both sides as they provide much needed solidarity for Holy Land Christians.
· Ambassador of the Mother Church
After two thousand years, Christian families are still living and worshiping in the land where Jesus was born, died, and resurrected. These Christians are not immigrants. They are not converts from Judaism or Islam. They are the descendents of those who first believed in Jesus Christ. They live in Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Nazareth, Madaba, Karak and other places in Palestine, Jordan and Israel. They are Arab Christians - Orthodox, Catholic, and Protestant.Together, they comprise the Mother Church.
· Ambassadors for Christ
Partnered churches act as ambassadors for Christ in a Ministry of Hope to the Holy Land. Their communications remind the Christian faithful, who in desperate conditions seldom feel in solidarity with the rest of the body of Believers, that they are not forgotten. Palestinian Christians will receive the friendship and support they desperately need.
· A new way to experience Christ
Partnership with the Christians of the Holy Land enables us to experience Christ in new ways and allows us to be Christ to others. As Christians look outside themselves to see the needs of their brothers and sisters, as Christ himself taught us to do, their faith is renewed.
· Communications in Christ
Each partner can strengthen the bond through mutual prayer and exchange of information on church happenings and events. Communications between church partners foster solidarity and are facilitated through HCEF. Relations between are built up through exchange of letters, tapes, pictures, and videos between the church communities, church groups, religious education classes, pastors, and lay leaders. Through communications in Christ, both partners are introduced to new ways in which to worship the same Lord.
· An opportunity to learn about the first Christians
Since few American Christians have been introduced to the situation facing the Mother Church in the Holy Land, the church in the US can use partnership as an opportunity to learn more about the history of Christians in the Holy Land and their current situation. Churches may invite pastors and/or members of the congregation from the Holy Land to visit their partner church in the US or may participate in educational activities offered by the Holy Land Christian Support Network (HCSN) nearest the American church.
· Moved to action
As lives are shared between partners, the injustices suffered by Holy Land Christians quickly come to be seen as a major cause of poverty, social problems, and civil unrest. Promotion of human dignity and equality of rights often becomes an essential element of the relationship. Churches often consider how the concerns of the partner can be integrated into ministries and programs, and HCEF has developed a number of programs to foster solidarity and support.
For more information, request a Partnership Manual.