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Recent Events | National & Washington, D.C.
Hill Briefing: Israeli Settlements, Bethlehem & the Village of Wadi Foquin
When: Tuesday, November 14, 2017
Where: Washington, D.C. | SVC 209-08, U.S. Capitol Visitor Center
While violence often dominates media coverage from Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories, there are opportunities for U.S. policy to play a constructive role in reducing violence, addressing human rights concerns, and working toward a durable resolution to the conflict. The Mayor of Bethlehem, Anton Salman, and the Mayor of Wadi Foquin, Ahmad Sokar spoke about the impact of Israeli settlement expansion and opportunities for Congress to intervene. A special thank you to our co-sponsors, Friends of Wadi Foquin; Faith Forum on Middle East Policy; and General Board of Church and Society of the United Methodist Church! Complete Hill Briefing announcement HERE.
Pilgrimage to Peace with Daoud Nassar
When: October 17-23, 2017
Where: Washington, D.C. | Seattle, Washington | North Carolina
Rev. Dr. Mae Elise Cannon, Executive Director of CMEP hosted conversations with Daoud Nassar from Tent of Nations near Bethlehem about daily living, human rights concerns, and peacebuilding. We advocate for peace, security, freedom, and dignity for all the people of the Holy Land. Our Christian heritage provokes a desire for peace and justice in the Holy Land, the birthplace of our faith. For many Christians, a neglected element of their faith is understanding the role we can play as peacemakers and reconcilers in the midst of conflict. We believe global-minded Christians, who are committed to compassion and justice, can bring hope to broken communities throughout the world—even Israel and Palestine.
Hill Briefing: Zimam: Positive Efforts Toward Peace from Palestinian Civil Society
When: Friday, July 14, 2017
Time: 9:30 – 10:30am
Where: 441 Cannon House Office Building
As Israeli control over the West Bank enters its 50th year, people around the world are asking what are the concrete, positive, and productive steps that can be made to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In Palestinian society itself – despite enormous barriers – Zimam is leading the effort to encourage and train young activists to fight against extremism, to promote nonviolence, and counter the hopelessness so many feel. By taking responsibility for those elements that everyday people have control over, Palestinian civil society will grow stronger, healthier, and more resilient. It will also help people gain the confidence that can empower Palestinians to renew and re-energize their campaign for freedom, statehood, and a peaceful end to the conflict.
Church of the Brethren Annual Meeting
When: June 30th, 2017
Where: Grand Rapids, Michigan
CMEP’s executive director was the keynote speaker for the Global Mission and Service Dinner at the Church of the Brethren Annual Meeting in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She spoke about “God’s Heart for Justice and Peace in the Middle East.” Her message focused on teachings in the Scriptures about Biblical justice. She also shared stories about Israelis and Palestinians committed to bridging divides in the midst of harsh realities on the ground in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories.
Moving from Discipleship to Advocacy: An Introduction to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
When: June 29th, 2017 from 9:00 A.M. – 12:00 P.M.
Where: Hope Church, 77 W. 11th Street, Holland, MI 49423
Churches for Middle East Peace’s (CMEP) Executive Director Rev. Dr. Mae Elise Cannon talked with the Reformed Church in America (RCA) about historical and contemporary conflicts in the Holy Land, the partnership between CMEP and the RCA and their mission in Israel and Palestine, and how to become involved in advocacy work related to the region. The speakers at this event included: Rev. Dr. Mae Elise Cannon; Earl James, RCA Coordinator of Missional Mosaic and Advocacy; and Joshua Vis, RCA Facilitator for Church Engagement in Israel/Palestine. This speaking event was hosted by CMEP and one of its board organizations, the Reformed Church in America (RCA).
Jerusalem Expert Danny Seidemann: Latest Developments in Jerusalem
When: Monday, June 26,2017 from 10:30-11:30 AM
Where: St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, Baxter Hall 301 A Street SE, Washington, DC 20003
Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP) in partnership with the Foundation for Middle East Peace, for a briefing by Danny Seidemann on the role the American Christian faith community plays, and can play the future, in securing a peaceful and inclusive future for the holy city of Jerusalem and all of its people.
50 Years Too Long: A CMEP Advocacy Event – A Pathway to Peace in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories
When:June 4-6, 2017
Location: Washington, D.C.
June 2017 marks the 50th year of the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, an occupation which threatens the security of Israel and imposes harsh burdens on the Palestinian people. Hosted by Churches for Middle East Peace, “50 Years Too Long” was an advocacy summit for American Christians who gathered, learned, and advocated for constructive ways to pursue a just and sustainable peace in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
CMEP staff and interns engaged with dedicated advocates for peace and justice at our table in the EAD exhibition hall. We shared about CMEP’s recent events, upcoming trip to the Holy Land and invited everyone who stopped by to attend CMEP’s advocacy summit, 50 Years too Long, June 4-6 in Washington, D.C.
Hope as a Response to a Volatile Middle East
When: Thursday. April 20, 2017 6:30-7:30 p.m. EDT
Where: Washington City Church of the Brethren, 337 North Carolina Ave SE, Washington, D.C., 20003
CMEP hosted the Middle East analyst, Daniel Sherman for a conversation focused on opportunities for movement towards peace between Israelis and Palestinians in the midst of a fragile regional context.
Conversation with Israeli Peace Activist Sahar Vardi
When: Wednesday, April 12, 2017 3-4:30 p.m. EDT
Where: 100 Maryland Ave NE, Washington, D.C., 20002
PCUSA Conference Room, Suite #410
Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP) Hosted Sahar Vardi for a conversation about the Human Rights Defenders Club.
Reality Check: Almost 50 Years of Occupation
When: Wednesday, March 1, 2017 9-10 a.m.
Location: Washington, D.C
Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP) & Executive Director Hagai El-Ad of B’Tselem Engaged on a briefing on human rights concerns in the Palestinian territories after almost 50 years of occupation.
Disturbing the Peace
When: Monday, February 27,2017 at 7 pm
Location: Washington, D.C.
CMEP has sponsored a DC viewing of the film “Disturbing the Peace.” The film follows former enemy combatants, Israeli soldiers and Palestinian fighters, who have joined together to challenge the status quo and say “enough.” Click here to find upcoming screenings and watch their transformational journeys from soldiers to nonviolent peace activists.
Recent Events | Regional
CMEP Delaware Chapter on April 10, 2017: Rev. Dr. Mae Elise Cannon and Molly Lorden, CMEP’s Church Engagement Intern, had the opportunity to meet with the steering council of CMEP Delaware CMEP Delaware is an exciting group of mostly current and retired clergy, representing Episcopalians, Presbyterians, Methodists and Baptists. We discussed our new policy positions, our approach to advocacy, and what would benefit their group and their local congregations. They are very energized!
Evening Meeting at English Lutheran Church in La Crosse Wisconsin on April 6, 2017: The meeting had 18 people including the Senior Pastor Mark Solyst. He’s never been to the Holy Land and is eager to attend. The people who joined the conversation were very engaged. Many of them had taken a trip to the Holy Land in 2015. Some had traveled to the region years ago. We discussed CMEP and our current efforts and strategy. There was significant interest in #Lights4Gaza and they would like to have ongoing engagement with CMEP moving forward. Kent is planning on joining the June Advocacy Summit and it looks like people from the LaCrosse area may be joining us as well.
Lancaster Middle East Interest Group on April 1, 2017: CMEP Executive Director and church engagement intern joined several people from an ecumenical background who meet monthly as a part of the Middle East Interest Group in Lancaster, PA.