Make Apartheid History Advent Calendar

The United Network for a Just Peace In  Palestine and Israel has created a Make Apartheid History Advent Calendar on the front page of their website  below the Bethlehem Prayer Service information.

The calendar has been up since December 1, so some stars have been unlocked and others have not.  Each start will bring us revealing information about what is occurring in Palestine/Israel.

Please take the time to check out what the Magi are doing and explore each star of the calendar.

Make Apartheid History Advent Calendar

Rehab Nazzal shot by Israeli Forces

At approximately 2:00 PM on Friday December 11, Rehab Nazzal was carefully walking along Al Khalil Street, a main avenue in the north of the Palestinian city of Bethlehem, towards where she usually stands with other journalists and photographers. She wanted to document a military “Skunk” truck that spays chemicals with a strong sewage smell. Nazzal, a third year PhD student in Western’s Visual Arts Department who holds a SSHRC Doctoral Scholarship to investigate the sonic effect of unmanned robotic weapons and surveillance systems on civilians, has been documenting the clashes between the Israeli occupation forces and the Palestinian protesters since the beginning of October. Her research focuses on the effect of the Israeli weapons that target human senses: sound bombs, teargas and Skunk chemicals. Rehab’s work has been exhibited nationally in Canada, as well as internationally.

She reports what happened to her on Friday: “While walking, I would take shelter every few meters to avoid the teargas and the “Skunk” army truck that was spraying sewage chemical liquid on the protesters and the surrounding neighborhoods. When I stopped by a corner of one of the shops, and while taking some photographs, I was suddenly shot in the leg. I did not realize what had happened. The last image I photographed shows a sniper hiding on the ground near the entrance to one of the city’s hotels.”

When an ambulance rushed to her aid, it was attacked with teargas grenades, which suffocated the paramedics and Nazzal, creating a cloud of gas that prevented other photographers and journalists from documenting what was happening. Examination at the hospital revealed that a bullet had entered and exited her leg, fortunately without shattering any bones. Nazzal reports that she is now fine, getting the necessary medical help and will soon recover. The wound was identified as being from a .22 caliber bullet, a type of ammunition that is prohibited for live fire against unarmed civilians, according to Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem .

“What shocked me was the fact that I was alone, with no clashes, no stone throwers, absolutely no one around me, and yet I was intentionally shot by a sniper. This was not an accident,” comments Nazzal. Dar Al-Kalima University, where she is lecturing while in the West Bank for her research, sent an official letter about this to the Canadian Embassy in Tel Aviv.

Award-winning London-based artist Jamelie Hassan, who exhibited with Nazzal last year at a gallery in London, Ontario, comments: “Rehab’s photographic and mixed media installations are significant and powerful works that reveal the structures of occupation and on-going impact of the Israeli occupation on the daily lives of Palestinians. It is vital in this sort of research-based work for artists to be able to document with photography the reality they are studying. I am shocked by this violence against a fellow Canadian artist, and concerned not only for her safety but also for the safety of many other Palestinian journalists and media professionals who are put at risk by the reckless violence of the occupation’s military.”

Take Action:
A letter from UNJPPI has been sent to the Honorable Stephane Dion to ask for a response from the Government.     Download the letter.

What you can do:

  1. Write to Stephan Dion (stephane.dion@parl.gc.ca) with your own appeal. Copy to the other officials.
  2. Sign a petition.

See also:
CJPME website.
Letter from Rev. Mitri Rehab (Dar al-Kalima University)
to the Embassy of Canada,Tel Aviv.

Bethlehem Prayer Service – Saturday, December 19 – 10 am EST

Join worshipers in the National Cathedral in Washington, USA for the ninth annual joint simulcast Christmas service with the people of Bethlehem. Prayers, readings, and hymns alternate between Washington, D.C., and Palestine via the Internet, bringing together people of different lands, languages, and ethnic backgrounds in celebration of the birth of the Prince of Peace.

Download the service sheet.

There are several ways to participate in the service:

  1. Click on the video link below.
  2. Go to the Washington National Cathedral website.
    The service will also be webcast from the homepage.
  3. Go to the UNJPPI website.

(Allow your browser to show images to see the video image below.)

Watch the service.

Meeting Acknowledgements

Saskatchewan Conference encourages congregations, pastoral charges and presbyteries to include two acknowledgements at the beginning of their meetings/worship services.

The first acknowledgement should be regarding the traditional territories and treaty land that we are situated on.  To facilitate that we have included a map to help determine your location in relationship to the Treaties Areas .  For information about the language group, which will give you whose traditional territory you live on, please check out one of these links:

Saskatchewan Indian Cultural Centre   (maps coming soon to this site)

Saskatchewan GenWeb   (please scoll down to the Aboriginal – First Nations – Native section)

Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan 

The other acknowledgement is around being an Affirming Conference. The following is included in the minutes of Conference Executive minutes:

And so we also acknowledge that Saskatchewan Conference is an Affirming Conference of The United Church of Canada as one that embraces diversity and strives to include and be a safe place for all people regardless of age, gender, race, culture, education, ability, economic status, marital status, sexual orientation, or gender identity.

Please feel free to contact the Conference Office, at 306-721-3311 or  bdiebert@skconf.ca    if you have any questions.

Anas, 15 year old Palestinian, shot

Greetings to all from Brussels. I just spoke with my friend and colleague Salim Shawamreh, ICAHD’s field coordinator and Palestinian activist whose home has been demolished (and rebuilt by ICAHD) six times. I learned that his 15 year-old son Anas had been shot by Israeli soldiers. He is thankfully (and miraculously) alive, but severely wounded and traumatized. The story is harrowing, a good example of how the IDF is doing nothing less than hunting Palestinians — and especially children and youth.

For the full story, please click on the facebook link below.

Facebook © 2015
Posted by Jeff Halper on FaceBook
https://www.facebook.com/jeff.halper.5/posts/10153464930414682

UN Millennium Development Goals

In September 2000, building upon a decade of major United Nations conferences and summits, world leaders came together at United Nations Headquarters in New York to adopt the United Nations Millennium Declaration, committing their nations to a new global partnership to reduce extreme poverty and setting out a series of time-bound targets – with a deadline of 2015 – that have become known as the Millennium Development Goals.

Read about the results of these 8 goals as of 2015:

  1. Eradicate Extreme poverty and hunger
  2. Achieve universal primary education
  3. Promote gender equality and empower women
  4. Reduce child mortality
  5. Improve maternal health
  6. Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
  7. Ensure environmental sustainability
  8. Global partnership for development

In September 2015, the UN Sustainable Development Summit was held in New York. From that summit 17 goals were established along with 169 targets with a deadline of 2030. The Local Global Advocacy network will highlight one of these goals each week beginning in the new year. Watch for the weekly posts on our site and hold the work toward those goals as a prayer for God’s world.

These 17 Sustainable Development Goals are meant as a global agenda that will determine the future of sustainable development.  The new paradigm that these goals are based on is very exciting, that of transforming the current model of donor-driven aid and developed world/third world approach into a universally applicable, sustainable and accountable agenda for all.   The new paradigm aims for eradication of poverty, reduction of inequalities within and between countries and advancement of economic, social, civil, political and cultural human rights.   For more information please see

https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/post2015/tranformingourworld