Friday, October 10, 2008

CPT Hebron project to close after thirteen years

As some of my readers know -- and many don't -- in 2002, I went to Israel-Palestine on two different peace witness delegations. One of them was with Christian Peacemaker Teams, with whom I spent time and worked in Hebron and Beit Umar. Their work was deeply centered, and definitely practical.

I read this with great sadness. CPT has done such good work in Hebron. Not only will their presence be missed, their absence will be felt in many concrete ways.

- sm

To view the on-line version click here:

10 October 2008
HEBRON: CPT Hebron project to close after thirteen years.

by Tarek Abuata, Palestine Support Coordinator

I would like to thank our supporters, our team members, and our partners for their love, prayers, and generous financial support over the past thirteen years. During these years, many have given much of their lives and poured plenty of their love into the continuing work of God.

I would especially like to express my gratitude for the loving spirit of our partners in Palestine/Israel with which they've always welcomed us. Since 1995, we've shed many tears of sadness and joy with them, and we've dipped our fingers into many maqloobeh platters together. Palestinians say "whoever lives forty days with a community becomes one of them." We've spent more than 4000 days in Hebron, and we've always felt the incredible love and hospitality of the Palestinian community. We are truly a family, because we've always helped each other as sisters and brothers.

CPT regretfully had to make the hard decision to close the Hebron team site. We have been suffering with an inadequate number of full-time CPTers on this team for months. Stretched thin, we covered the work of the Hebron team site with reservists until August, knowing that this option was not sustainable.

We continue to be committed to Palestine. A strong CPT project in At-Tuwani continues to partner with the Palestinian communities of the Southern Hebron Hills in their nonviolence efforts. We also have a committee exploring possibilities for collaborating with other significant Palestinian nonviolent efforts. It is our hope that these efforts lay the groundwork for a healthy rebirthing of additional CPT work either in Hebron or elsewhere in Palestine when and if long term full-time staffing permits.

As an organization, we have expanded outreach efforts and ask that you join us in calling new people into this work. We are working hard to undo oppressions within CPT, such as racism and sexism, and to nurture the conditions for healthy team life.

I would like for all of us to remember that we are Easter people and we open our vision to look outward toward new openings rather than narrowing our vision to see only closings, for the continuing work of God doesn't stop with a closure; it has no closure. Only our human work comes to a close.

As a Palestine Project, we will keep folks updated on our progress with the refocusing committee work. Many blessings and love to you, and many thanks once again for your continuing generous support.


CPT's MISSION: "Getting in the Way." What would happen if Christians devoted the same discipline and sacrifice to nonviolent peacemaking that armies devote to war? Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) seeks to enlist the whole church in organized, nonviolent alternatives to war and places teams of trained peacemakers in regions of lethal conflict.

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