Bethlehem Day 5

Its very difficult to write the reality here. Last evening, after class, I was invited by some of the participants, all Muslem, to visit the Nativity Church and the manger. Because I was with them, I got access to areas of the Church I did not see on Friday–and they graciously shared their understanding of the significance and power of Jesus life, and the holiness and historic magnificence of this place. As one enters the Church, there is a large sign stating that the roof repairs, taking place now, are being funded by the President of Palestine. Apparently, personally. As we stood in a small cave under the current Church, I blurted out–without thinking–”Jesus was a Palestinian”. My friends laughed, and say “You didn’t know he was born in Bethlehem?”. I replied that I did–but never had anyone in all my readings, studying, conversations about Jesus’ life—ever acknowledged that Jesus …

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