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Hope for the Middle East?

   

January 14, 2003
By Daniel Rempel

Winnipeg, Man.—Mennonite workers continue building the foundations of peace in the Middle East at a time when newscasts report ever-increasing violence. Gordon Janzen had a chance to connect with some of those workers on a recent trip.

As Mission Partnership Facilitator for Asia and the Middle East, he traveled with Mennonite Mission Network colleagues to meet with Mennonite Church Canada Witness workers and other Mennonite initiatives including Christian Peacemaker Teams and Mennonite Central Committee.

These projects variously serve as meeting grounds for Jews, Muslims and Christians where understanding can begin to grow. At Nazareth Village, local Jews and Muslims can learn about the life of Jesus (see related story).

Whether evangelism or peace and justice oriented, or both, each project proclaims peace, forgiveness and a call for understanding as an alternative to the escalating hatred.

Witness worker Glenn Witmer, witness worker, edits “MennoLetter from Jerusalem”, a bimonthly newsletter to build awareness and understanding of the complexities of the many-sided conflict in the Middle East. It had 800 subscribers at last count and can be read online at www.mennonitechurch.ca/news/jerusalemletter/.