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Happy Christmas from the Middle East

Canon Andrew White | Posted 12.16.2014 | Religion
Canon Andrew White

Here in their refugee camp, the Christians with no Christmas like us in the West have placed a refugee tent for Jesus, and there in the camp is a tent for another person who was also a poor refugee who had nothing.

What Do Palestinians Want for Christmas

Anton Murra | Posted 12.16.2014 | Religion
Anton Murra

Instead, the plight of the Palestinian Christian is very much connected to that of the Palestinian Muslim in that both experience injustices every day as a result of oppressive and discriminatory policies imposed on them by the Israeli Occupation.

Celebrating Christmas

William B. Bradshaw | Posted 12.13.2014 | Religion
William B. Bradshaw

Actually, we will never know the exact birth date of Jesus. But that really doesn't make any difference, for we know that Jesus was a real person who is still alive and is a very real presence in our lives today. Let us focus on that as we prepare for a blessed Christmas celebration.

Israeli Settlements Squeeze Religious Tourism In Palestinian Areas, Officials Say

Reuters | Luke Baker | Posted 12.14.2014 | Religion

* Palestinians lament pressure on Bethlehem's tourism * Israeli settlements cutting off the city, they say * Expert esti...

Casinos Fail Old Industrial Towns

Peter Van Buren | Posted 11.14.2014 | Business
Peter Van Buren

Only a generation ago, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania had a steel mill employing tens of thousands of people at good wages. The typical casino worker today in Bethlehem makes $10-12 an hour. Many are part-time.

The Pope And Peace In The Middle East: We Are All Francis Now

Paul Brandeis Raushenbush | Posted 07.26.2014 | Religion
Paul Brandeis Raushenbush

Pope Francis has shown us a faithful, peaceful approach to the Palestinian/Israeli conflict. All of us can follow his example. We are all Pope Francis now. It is up to all of us.

No One Remembers the Name of the Inn: A Christmas Eve Homily

Rev. Emily C. Heath | Posted 02.22.2014 | Religion
Rev. Emily C. Heath

When we tell and retell the most important stories of our life, we often find that every time we tell it, there are a few details that we can't leave ...

Christmas, Fact and Fiction

Kristin M. Swenson, Ph.D. | Posted 02.21.2014 | Religion
Kristin M. Swenson, Ph.D.

Human beings are story-telling creatures. Stories help us to understand our world, to find our place in it and sometimes our purpose, too. So, the distinctions we draw between fact and fiction are rarely as absolute as we might wish them to be.

Jesus' Birthplace Gets Urgent Repairs

AP | DANIELA BERRETTA | Posted 01.25.2014 | Religion

BETHLEHEM, West Bank (AP) — As visitors descend upon Bethlehem this holiday season, they will notice a different look for the Church of the Nativity...

Christmas Is for Worship

Rev. Kenneth Tanner | Posted 01.29.2014 | Religion
Rev. Kenneth Tanner

It's time to worry a lot less about getting Christ back into Christmas (he can't be blasted out of Christmas, no matter how hard anyone tries). What needs to get back into Christmas is worship.

Footsteps of a Mother -- One Woman's Journey to Bring Peace to the Holy Land

Roots of Peace | Posted 01.23.2014 | Impact
Roots of Peace

2013-09-23-EntChallenge.jpgI'm often asked what drives my work in the Middle East. I do it because I am a mother.

Street Art At The Israeli-Palestinian Separation Wall

Jaime Rojo & Steven Harrington | Posted 10.02.2013 | Arts
Jaime Rojo & Steven Harrington

After a half hour, soldiers yelled down, asking what they were doing. "We're from New York, we paint," they shouted back, and continued spraying. M...

My Piece in the Middle East

Greg White | Posted 08.10.2013 | Politics
Greg White

This week, Israel has been safe and was my best travel bet. She wears a lot of beautiful hats -- and I've been embraced and hugged by them all. I was respectful in my behavior and they returned the kindness. I'm not religious, but I pray the next person finds Israel as happy as I leave it.

Ten Reasons to Love Pennsylvania

Judith Fein | Posted 07.24.2013 | Travel
Judith Fein

"You're going to Pennsylvania?" our friends asked. "You're usually flying off to some destination we've never heard of, but the state named after William Penn? Why Pennsylvania?"

The Beauty of Palestine: Olives, Women, and Scarves

Rick Steves | Posted 07.17.2013 | Travel
Rick Steves

Frankly, Palestine is not a very pretty place. In hopes of scouting somewhere that looks good for our TV camera, I searched for natural zones. One pla...

Bethlehem: Gateway to Palestine

Rick Steves | Posted 07.16.2013 | Travel
Rick Steves

If there was no border or traffic to deal with, you could bicycle from the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem to the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem in...

Peace Through People: From Bethlehem And Around The World

Karen Berg | Posted 07.09.2013 | Religion
Karen Berg

If we can feel those around us and extend love instead of judgment, we can create unity among peoples, and our words and actions will reverberate around the world.

Israeli And Palestinian Women Crossing The Divide

Diana Bletter | Posted 06.26.2013 | Religion
Diana Bletter

The distance between Bethlehem and Acco is about 113 miles, yet most of the women have never had the chance to meet one another. "Women can change the idea that we can't live together," said the organizer. "Because we can."

Why I Love the Lehigh Valley

Maria Rodale | Posted 04.27.2013 | Healthy Living
Maria Rodale

People still look at me funny when I say Rodale is headquartered in the Lehigh Valley. Sometimes I'll say Emmaus, sometimes Allentown or Bethlehem. B...

PHOTOS: Surprising Palestinian Styles

Jean Newman Glock | Posted 04.27.2013 | Travel
Jean Newman Glock

Can a culture be preserved and reconstructed through its costumes?

The Innkeeper Is The Hero

Anne Dilenschneider | Posted 02.24.2013 | Religion
Anne Dilenschneider

This is my favorite Christmas story because, until I heard it, I had never thought about the innkeeper. The innkeeper isn't part of most Nativity sets. I haven't heard any carols about the innkeeper. There don't seem to be any paintings that include him, either.

Remembering Bethlehem

James Zogby | Posted 02.21.2013 | World
James Zogby

The lack of understanding in the West for the plight of Bethlehem and our silence in the face of its suffering is a metaphor for the entire Palestinian situation. In our mind's eye we can clearly see Israel and our imagined Bethlehem, but the Palestinian people of today do not exist.

The Bethlehem Wall

Reverend William E. Flippin, Jr. | Posted 02.20.2013 | Religion
Reverend William E. Flippin, Jr.

This Christmas season, the story of a miracle birth in a quiet manger seems impossibly distant from the little town of Bethlehem that we know today. Two millennia after the birth of Christ, this ancient, holy city is quite literally being strangled in the shadow of the barrier wall.

Christmas in Bethlehem: Image and Reality, 2012

Philip Farah | Posted 02.19.2013 | World
Philip Farah

If you have a miniature manger in your home today, or if you've heard a piece of music in the mall with "Bethlehem" in it, I -- as a Palestinian Christian in whose life Bethlehem has played a big role -- have a favor to ask you.

Pitching Baby Jesus to the Paploids: If OK! Was Around in the First Century

Angela Himsel | Posted 02.18.2013 | New York
Angela Himsel

The baby twins on the cover of Shalom! -- the top selling papyrus celebrity mag in all of Israel -- drew Miriam in.