Greetings from Musalaha! As the summer begins with all the activities that accompany it, it is important to take stock of where we are, where we have come from, and where we are going. Over the last two years, a new aspect of our ministry has emerged, our study tours. Nearly every week we have groups coming to visit our office from all over the world, seeking to learn more about Musalaha’s ministry.
These study tours include touring the Christian sites, but also training in reconciliation and the opportunity to spend time with both Israeli Messianic believers and Palestinian Christians who are involved in reconciliation work. While learning about reconciliation in our conflict, many people also discover that the same principles are also applicable to their own context. Just last week we had a Cuban and American pastor sitting together and learning about reconciliation!
We have also seen God at work in other ways. New opportunities for sharing about Musalaha and the message of reconciliation have been opened by God, here in this country and internationally. We have had the privilege of reaching people across a broad spectrum of beliefs and opinions within the body of the Messiah. This has been a powerful affirmation from God, for we have been able to share in places that we would never have had access to without Him. For example the Anglican GAFCON (Global Anglican Future Conference) Conference, where they are dealing with their own issues of division, and the UMJC (Union of Messianic Jewish Congregations), where they as a body had never heard the message of reconciliation from a Palestinian Christian. At all of these engagements, my speaking along side Evan Thomas and Ritti Katz, two Messianic Jewish members of Musalaha’s Board, was a strong testimony to the power of reconciliation.
Invitations also came to speak at “The Call”, a conference that was held here in Jerusalem, and from Charisma Magazine, which featured an article on Musalaha’s work. All over, the message of Musalaha has been reaching new forums and audiences, and has been warmly received.
These encouraging signs of God’s provision and care have helped us, and we pray that they will encourage you as well, and motivate you to keep praying for peace in our land, and for reconciliation between all the brothers and sisters in His name.
Salim J. Munayer Ph/D.
1. July 7-11 2008, Musalaha Children’s Summer Camp
Please remember to keep this camp in your prayers as our staff is busy preparing for it through recruiting, and planning. The focus of this camp will be on the Life of Moses which explores many themes including the importance of following God, freedom, slavery, obedience, and deliverance. This is our longest running camp (2008 marks our fifth year) so recruiting is less difficult because it is already known. However breaking through to new children and new communities is never easy. Your prayers will help greatly these Palestinian and Israeli children, ages 9-12 as they take their first steps down the long road of reconciliation.
2. July 20-23 2008, Musalaha Sports Camp
This camp offers a unique opportunity for teenage girls of all three faiths, Christians, Muslims, and Jews, from both the Israeli and Palestinian communities to come together for a time of fun, fellowship, and learning. The focus of this camp is on sports training, but it also includes significant sessions on reconciliation, as well as health, nutrition, and self-image. The theme will be Voices, and we will take a look at the many different voices that influence the lives of teenage girls. As this is only the second year we have run this camp, it is less well known, and recruiting has been a challenge. Please pray for more participants, and that God will bring together the girls He has ready for reconciliation.
3. August 4-8 2008, Nablus Children’s Summer Camp
This camp, which is in a different Palestinian community every year, is going to be in the West Bank city of Nablus this year, and will include both Christian and Muslim children, ages 6-12. Because of the rarity of this type of interaction (this is the only summer camp in the P.A. that purposefully brings Christian and Muslim children together) these children will need your prayer. There will be lots of fun, as well as Bible study. Please pray that these children will come with an open mind, and an open heart towards their neighbors, and that God will bless this effort organized by women from our women’s group.