For many years, Westminster has maintained partnerships with faith communities and nonprofit organizations in Cameroon, Cuba and Palestine. Our partners inspire us as they continue to witness and serve in circumstances of scarcity and conflict. In Cameroon our primary partners are the Kumba Town Presbyterian Church and AIDSCARE Link—which funds micro-loans to help persons living […]
About Brigitte Parenteau
This author has yet to write their bio.Meanwhile lets just say that we are proud Brigitte Parenteau contributed a whooping 54 entries.
Entries by Brigitte Parenteau
Our first stop was Sephorris, a vast site best known for its mosaics (the “Mona Lisa” of mosaics) and the large Roman city that was there in Jesus’ time. Scholars assume Jesus and his father labored at Sepphoris.
For our morning devotions, we walked toward the water to the Church of St. Andrew, a lovely Scottish Presbyterian chapel. The minister, Kate MacDonald, met us and joined us in prayer. She spoke about her work, which is as much with dozens of partners in Israel and Palestine working for peace and justice, as it is with pastoral leadership in the congregation.
We walked across the vast square that spreads out between Al Aqsa Mosque and the Dome on the Rock. Actually, we were also walking across where Jews believe the First and Second Temples stood. For both religious traditions, this is holy ground. For Muslims it is the third holiest of their pilgrimage sites, after Mecca and Medina.
Helena, mother of Roman Emperor Constantine, had the first Church of the Nativity built in this place around the year 333, to commemorate what was believed to be the cave where Jesus was born. It has gone through multiple renovations and restorations in the centuries since, including when the Crusaders controlled the region, beginning in 1099.
On the Palestinian side, the wall has become a billboard, an art exhibition, an outlet for anger and frustration, and an opportunity for creative protest in humor. For many, the most moving part of what is displayed there are printed out, large posters offering details in the first person of the impact of the wall and the Israeli occupation.
We then headed to the Mount of Olives, to start a long walking trek of about three hours. First stop was a lookout viewpoint on the ridge above the Kidron Valley, looking across to the Old City of Jerusalem and its walls and many churches and mosques. From there we made our way to the Dominus Flevit (“The Lord Wept”) Church.
It is always difficult to come face to face with humanity’s vast capacity to be inhuman to others. The Holocaust is as extreme as it gets, but it was not a spontaneous event. It was the result of centuries of Christian antipathy toward Jews. Although we may not feel directly complicit, there’s no doubt about the role of our Christian forebearers in the faith.
- Why Does Exile Matter?September 29, 2019 - 11:26 am
- What Happened at the Exodus?September 22, 2019 - 3:01 pm
- Why Covenant?September 17, 2019 - 3:37 pm
- What Does the Story of Creation Mean?September 10, 2019 - 2:11 pm
- Living in the MomentSeptember 1, 2019 - 1:47 pm
- Inherited Treasure: The Word of GodAugust 25, 2019 - 1:48 pm
- Westminster Member Chad Quaintance Lives His FaithOctober 12, 2019 - 3:14 pm
- Westminster Launches Performing Arts Series in New Westminster HallSeptember 6, 2019 - 11:31 am
- Westminster Joins Community Solar GardenAugust 20, 2019 - 1:12 pm
- An unusual model of church ministryJuly 10, 2019 - 3:47 pm
- Why so many Twin Cities clergy members bicycle religiouslyJune 24, 2019 - 11:59 am
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