Beit Jala, Palestine – Abraham’s Herberge (Beit Ibrahim) is more than just a hostel, it is a mission.
“The Tent of Abraham” is a figurative tent that welcomes all into its borders and embraces children of the village Al-Ubeidiya. The program located east of Bethlehem was created by the staff and committee of Abraham’s Herberge to offer a supplemental education to children in Al-Ubeidiya and surrounding villages that do not receive the resources they need to flourish. The programs offer English and German, Dabke dance, and an Environment Club.
“The work we have started here is very precious to us because it shows that we are serving the whole society,” Bishop Munib Younan said. “The children are from the Palestinian Muslim community with whom we have had a relationship for over 10-years. The community eventually asked us to come create a program for the children and this also serves as a model of accompaniment.”
The budget received from ELCJHL partners in Germany and Switzerland help support the program.
On Saturday, April 22 The Tent of Abraham celebrated a Spring Feast where students chanted Arabic songs, recited poems and danced Dabke. This sort of celebration reinforces a motto of The Evangelical Lutheran Schools that children should be proud of their Palestinian identity which strengthens their power to overcome obstacles.
The Tent of Abraham committee includes Bishop Munib Younan, Bishop-elect Ibrahim Azar, Director of Abraham’s Herberge Naim Muallem, The Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Reformation Beit Jala Pastor Saliba Rishmawi, and other community leaders.
Bishop Munib Younan was just named the 34th recipient of the Niwano Peace Prize for facilitating inter-religious dialogue in the region.