Palestinians serve as a model of faith and hope in the face of adversity and despair. Their aspirations and belief in human rights for all peoples demonstrate that there is no substitute for justice on the path to peace. They echo Christ’s message of peace and forgiveness as they wait for a just solution to their suffering. Through connecting Palestinians with their friends in the United States, the Christmas simulcast emphasizes the need to break down the walls that divide us and suppress the human spirit.
This past program included Christmas Carols in Arabic, Spanish and English, scripture readings, and prayers for peace by different religious and community leaders. The Christmas simulcast is an important exercise of solidarity between the Palestinian people and their supporters in the United States. Our compassion and messages of support remind Palestinians that they are never forgotten, and that their community of supporters is growing daily.
The following religious, political, and community leaders extended their own messages of peace and support:
- Father Michael McDonagh, International Advisor of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem
- Stephen B. Corbin DDS, MPH, Special Olympics Senior Vice President of Community Impact and Support
- Bishop William Shomali, Auxiliary Bishop, Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem
- Bishop Barry Knestout, Auxiliary Bishop of Washington
- H.E. Rula Ma’ayah, Palestinian Minister of Tourism & Antiquities
- H.E. Major General Jibreen Al-Bakri, Bethlehem District Governor
- Rev. Dr. David Renwick, Senior Pastor, National Presbyterian Church
- Father Paul Lee, Pastor, Shrine of St. Jude
- Rateb Rabie, KCHS, President/CEO of the Holy Land Christian Ecumenical Foundation
- Engineer Anthony Habash, Holy Land Christian Ecumenical Foundation's Regional Director
We are thankful to everyone who participated in 2014, and we encourage all to join us next year for this important celebration of Christ’s message of hope and peace for all peoples.