Day four is in the books.
Today we hit a groove. Everyone’s energy has increased and it was good blend of talking with folks and seeing some sites.
We began the day with a great visit with the YWCA of Palestine where we met with Suhair Ramadan and Loren McGrail about the work that the YWCA is doing around empowerment and education of women and children. They are doing some effective community organizing and helping folks to strengthen their understanding of self and develop a confidence to step into new ways of being. You can check out their website and be sure to visit the section on “The Fabric of Our Lives” that tells the stories of women and the villages they have had to leave because of the occupation.
We then headed to The Holocaust Museum which was, as expected, a powerful exhibit. The room of names and the children’s exhibits were particularly striking. As I walked through museum route, I found myself thinking about how these tactics of legalizing oppression, exacting violence, and creating social narratives to justify it all happens today in so many places.
After lunch we headed to see our last few holy sites, The Mount of Olives and The Garden of Gethsemane. And while there is certainly some debate about the historical truths about some of the claims of the these sites, they provided an opportunity to experiences some interesting history and religious tradition.
Before dinner we had a great conversations about Gaza with Nathan Stock of The Carter Center and the Middle East Conflict Resolution Program. Nathan gave us some great insights into some of the history, politics, and people of Gaza and the many pressures that are weighing down on then.
With every visit, it becomes clearer and clearer that I don’t know what I don’t even know. And while this will not lessen my responsibility to talk about what I have learned and what I believe, it has given me some perspective on the entire conflict. I am sure that I will never “get” it all, but I am glad for the chance to get a little more than I would have otherwise.
See you tomorrow.