Journey from the MidWest to the MidEast ...

The Indianapolis-based International Interfaith Initiative (III), in collaboration with the Village Experience, led a trip of a diverse group (including representatives from Jewish, Muslim, Catholic, Evangelical, and Hindu religious communities) to the Middle East from December 27, 2009 to January 9, 2010. It was a follow-up to the very successful III Mideast trip of 2008. Read about the adventure on this blog. Look for partnership opportunities for your group at ... and be part of the next trip from Indy to the MidEast.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

A Jerusalem Reflection

I am sitting in the lounge at the convent in Jerusalem trying to figure out what from the past two weeks I should write about - there is so much to say and no real way to express the emotions one feels in a situation like this. We have walked through the holy sites of Jerusalem, we have met people living in refugee camps in Jordan and Palestine, we have crossed the border posts as a local, we have camped under the stars in the Wadi Rum, we have drank beer in an Israeli bar, and we have talked and talked and talked....
One thing I will never forget on this journey is reconnecting with Yasir and Zena. I met this young couple last year on our trip (they are with me in the picture at the top of the blog). They are Iraqi refugees and have since had a baby boy named Amar. This is an amazing family and they are awaiting their relocation notice in Toronto, Canada. I can't wait to connect with them as soon as they are able to start their lives anew.
It is so fun for me to watch as people experience this part of the world for the first time. I can see the fire in Sheila as she takes in every thing around her and searches for a solution. I can see the empathy that flows from Hyam as she hears stories of struggle and hardship. I can see the motivation that is brewing in Becca as she plots a way to connect people at home with her new friends in the Middle East. And most importantly, I am having the time of my life watching the men on this trip "suffer" through sleeping in bunk beds, being cold at night, taking a shower without a curtain, and not having complete control over what is happening around them - as us girls like to say (and often get accused of) - high maintenance!

1 comment:

Nancy Gibson said...

haha, I love your closing statement. That would be truly entertaining.