Building Circles of Trust in the next generation.
In early March, a group of 30 Jewish, Muslim and Christian teenagers were led by the Pluralistic Spiritual Center (PSCC) at Neve Shalom/Wahat al-Salam, in cooperation with “Open House” in Ramle, in the program Masa/Massar, focused on developing Israeli Palestinian and Jewish young adult leadership.
The journey of discovery this Spring included opportunities for connecting through the arts, faith traditions and cultural history. Whether at the house of the artist Nihad Dabeet, the Open House in Ramle, or a walk across and through in Jerusalem, there was dialogue about the impact of current issues on themselves, their country and the sites. Whether hiking to a Christian convent and the Sanctuary of the Tomb of Saint Elizabeth, the Mosque in Abu Gosh or the Synagogue in Nataf, at each stop, participants had significant conversations with representatives of that site.
Sabbath was celebrated with a dinner on a farm close to Jerusalem. The blessing of the food was made according to the different traditions of the religions, in Hebrew and Arabic.
“The message is that we can dare to create structures that can bring people together in equality.”
The group spent two nights in group reflections at Neve Shalom/Wahat al-Salam’s Pluralistic Community Center. As they moved between different sites, communities and people, again and again they returned to the core question of what was learned from the encounter that could be brought into their lives
“The focus throughout the journey was on finding places where we can meet, respect each other, discover ways that we can enrich each other and create a reality in which there is hope for everyone”
We look forward to training the many participants who hope to become peer-leaders for future journeys. They will become builders of more trust, tolerance and mutual respect in our future generation.