Peace & Justice

This is the blog of the Commission on Peace and Justice for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany, New York.

Friday, January 15, 2010

A Bishop's Diary, Part 2

The second part of a diary Bishop Howard Hubbard kept during his recent trip to the Middle East is in this week's Evangelist; the first half appeared in The Evangelist’s Jan. 7 issue. Here is an excerpt:
On Monday evening, we met with two members of the Parents Circle Family Forum, an organization of more than 500 people who have lost a relative in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The first speaker, an Israeli woman, lost her son, David, as a result of a sniper attack while he was teaching philosophy at Tel Aviv University. Subsequently, the sniper was captured. The woman has now forgiven her son’s killer and has advocated with the Israeli government for his release from prison.

The mother of the second woman who presented, a Palestinian, was a leader of Fatah in Hebron who was incarcerated several times during this woman’s youth. Consequently, she had to become the mother for her younger brothers and sisters. One brother was shot by an Israeli settler and another by an Israeli soldier.

Both of these women are victims and have the same taste of tears. They are in agreement, however, that if we give people a chance to know each other as human beings, having the same hopes, desires and basic needs, there can be peace.

The work of the Parents Circle is primarily education. Last year, they made more than 1,000 presentations in both Israeli and Palestinian classrooms, telling their stories and entering into dialogue about how to break the vicious cycle of violence. Members tell stories about pregnant mothers or children who died on the way to the hospital because the ambulances couldn’t get them through the checkpoints quickly.

The rest of the article is here.

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