Doug and I went to the 11am Eucharist. Good message. It was about walls and the city of Bethlehem. The Palestinians there, both Chrstian and Muslim, are walled in by a thirty foot high wall. It is almost impossible for them to get out to visit relatives, to get medical care or to tend lands that are outside the city. The message was the difference between our ability to go in and kiss the star in the Church of the Nativity, in essence to "see" Christ, and our inability to see Christ in all of God's people.
We talked a bit about this over a beer. Doug works for UNICEF and he says Palestinians, who are behind the walls have little access to medical care, since it is primarily in Jerusalem and the Israeli authorities won't give permission for people to leave. Nitrates in drinking water is a big problem for the little ones. There are inadequate amounts, and pollution control is negligible. Many of the children under two are "blue babies". The US Center for Disease Control is getting involved, but it is hard to get them into the West Bank or Gaza because of security issues, so much of the work needs to be done remotely. Can you imagine your doctor not being able to see your child. In addition, schools are not being built because they can't get building materials in, so kids are not being educated.
Addendum: Since I cannot directly add photos to my web page via the blog, you'll have to go to Facebook to see any pictures. If that changes, you'll see it here.
After church, we walked through many bazaars, bought some Zatar (a spice I just live on bread), and then went into West Jerusalem, with it's fancy shops for a sandwich. Quite a contrast. We passed David's tower and two gates to the old city, did a quick run through the Holy Sepulcher (crowded,but I'll go back during the course), then stopped for the beer before heading back.
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