IDF Damage at Wi’am

Dear Friends,

I'm not sure if you've heard or not but as our dear friend, Zoughbi Zoughbi, and our other friends at the Wi'am Conflict Resolution Center in Bethlehem (right inside the Wall) showed up for work on Monday morning, December 7,  they found that their yard, equipment, building, shade, etc. had sustained damage from the increasing incursions by the Israeli Defense Forces into Bethlehem. You remember that Wi'am is one of our mission partners, that Zoughbi's daughter is a graduate of Goshen College, one son is a graduate of and a second son is a sophomore at Manchester University, that his wife, Elaine, is from South Bend and a graduate of Manchester College, and that Zoughbi has his MA in Peace and Conflict Studies from the Kroc Institute at Notre Dame. And, Zoughbi won the World Vision Global Peacemaker of the Year Award in 2011.

Everyone of our tour groups have visited Wi'am and many of us have had meals there with Zoughbi and the staff.  Finally, Terry Dougherty and I last December, with a grant from the Institute for Peace Studies at Manchester University installed hardware to assist us in Video-conferencing with the folks in Bethlehem. And Ron Caldwell, Terry, and I will be at Wi'am next month, as will our travelers in June.

See some pictures and a brief description of the damage reported by Zoughbi's nephew, Usama, on the Wi'am Facebook page.

As our minds turn to the horrible comments by some of our presidential candidates, politicians, and religious leaders here at home, we must also remember that our friends in Palestine remain under a terrible, inhumane, and illegal occupation.

We hold Zoughbi, Wi'am's staff, and all the people in Bethlehem and throughout the West Bank in our prayers.

Michael

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