Launch encounter of Interfaith Visits Encounter group – 28 October 2011
We met on Friday, October 28th, at 10am, ten Israelis in the Rahel Crossing. After a forty-minute delay we entered by foot into the city of Bethlehem. After the crossing we took taxis and went to the Nativity Church Plaza. There we met our Palestinian friends – most of them new to IEA activity.
We visited the city center, the Nativity Church and the market area. We experienced the atmosphere of Friday during the Jumaa prayer. Then we set in a nice café and talked about the sanctity of Shabbat in Judaism and of Friday in Islam. We shared knowledge about customs and traditions related to these special days and how they are implemented in our daily lives.
We celebrated the birthday of one of the new Israeli participants – Shoshana. We also celebrated the birth of the daughter of one of the new Palestinian participants – Abd-el-Majid.
The encounter was experiential and enriching both from the perspective of getting to know the city and from the perspective of our interfaith conversation.
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