HCEF’s Children’s Peace Project brings Palestinian Christian school children and their teachers to the U.S., where they live with host American families of participating sponsored U.S. churches and quickly become “part of the family.”
HCEF’s Children’s Peace Project brings Palestinian Christian school children and their teachers to the U.S., where they live with host American families of participating sponsored U.S. churches and quickly become “part of the family.” The time together provides the opportunity for both the Palestinian and American participants to reach across the barriers of distance and culture to experience their true kinship as members of Christ’s family.
One of the Churches sponsored and hosted five Palestinian children including John, who lived with one of the families. In March of this year, John wrote the following e-mail to his American “mom,” pouring out his heartbreak and frustration over the injustice he and his young friends experience as part of their daily lives.
As the letter was shared with other HCEF volunteers, they responded with thoughts such as:
- “This is what keeps me motivated to work with HCEF and try to help,” Sally
- “This is why we keep working. If we give up hope, so will the Christians. We can’t allow this to happen” Patty and
- “The letter from John encourages me to continue to work for the benefit of the children&..we have a job to do!” Sue
Happy Mother’s Day
how are you?i hope you are fine and doing good
today we took the day off and we went to jericho with all my class mates
we swam…ate…played tennis…and had lots of fun!!!
heh.but i felt that there was something going to happen. and it did happen
when we finished our trip we got into the bus and we headed back to beit-jala
but as you know we had to pass a check point
it was really dark but you know we are teenagers so we were singing and having lots of fun on the bus!!
anyway we got to the checkpoint whick we call (the container) and the bus stopped then a soldier got into the bus and he had a big flashlight in his hand
he started pointing at us with it to see our faces
but then a couple of girls on the bus started laughing and then he said : “knock it off”
and then one of those girls repeated :yea knock it off
the soldier thought that one of my friends was making fun of him so he turned around and started hitting him. he was just sitting there and he didnt even say a word about the soldier
he is really a small kid that you rarely hear his voice
he hit him really bad on the head
and what?! nobody could do anything about it. my teachers were looking at my friend getting beaten they couldnt do anything about it!!!
at that point i remembered one of our conversations that me and you had
when told that you are afraid that i have changed and that i want to live in USA instead of living in palestine and try to make peace
mom i want to ask you something ?!
was that soldier thinking about making peace when he was beating my friend ? dont tell he was
and was the person who hired that soldier he thinking of making peace? i don’t think so
i think you now know why i like living in USA
mom you should see the look on his face he looked so mean
but what killes me the most that some people say that we are terrorists and we have to be treated like this
is my friend a terrorist because a girl who was sitting next to him tried to say something funny?
if my friend tried to hit that soldier(and he knows that wont effect the soldier because he is wearing a bullet proof jacket) you would see 5 soldiers hitting him in way you cant imagine they hit him in a way that they will make sure to kill him or to injure him really badly
for god’s sake is that the way they want to make peace with
i am writting this email and i trying not to cry
mom i am sorry because i took from your time to read this email but i had to tell somebody with what is inside me so i can cool down the flame that is burning inside me