PHOTOS: Dar Al-Kalima Kindergarten Class of 2015 Graduates

BETHLEHEM – The Dar Al-Kalima Kindergarten Class of 2015 graduated on Friday, May 22nd, 2015.  The ceremony took place at Dar Annadwa in Bethlehem.  As well as being a graduation ceremony, kindergarten teacher Ms. Amal Demes was honored for her years of service to the Dar Al-Kalima Kindergarten.

Mabrouk and congratulations to all of our graduates!




PHOTOS: Reformation Day In The Lutheran Schools

(© D. Hudson/ELCJHL)

BETHLEHEM – On Friday, October 31st, 2014, the eighth grade students of the Evangelical Lutheran Schools participated in the Reformation Day celebration at Dar Al-Kalima School in Bethlehem. The day opened with a service guided by Bishop Munib Younan and continued with a number of different activities including art, lectures on Martin Luther, sport, music, and questions about Martin Luther and Lutheranism in general.

To listen to music from the Reformation Day celebration, you can visit the ELCJHL’s SoundCloud gallery.

An Interview With Bishop Munib Younan On Pope Francis’s Visit to Jordan, Palestine, and Israel

Pope Francis Prays at the Separation Wall
Bishop Younan stands with the Heads of Churches during the Pontifical Mass in Bethlehem
Bishop Younan stands with the Heads of Churches during the Pontifical Mass in Bethlehem (© ELCJHL)

ELCJHL: You were invited to visit Pope Francis in Jordan, Palestine, and Israel?
Bishop Younan: Yes, I was invited to the meeting with Pope Francis in Amman at the King’s Palace. All of the Heads of Churches, the Royal court and governmental ministers, attended this meeting, as well as Pope Francis’s delegation. King Abdullah II delivered a very important speech in which he spoke on two major issues: the role of Jordan in Muslim-Christian relations as highlighted in the Amman Message and the Common Word and the need for a solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. In response, the Pope emphasized the importance of relationships with Muslims and the good work that Jordan has been doing in interfaith work, as well as emphasizing the Christian community that has been quietly witnessing in the Middle East for 2,000 years. The Pope asked to greet this community.

Read King Abdullah II’s speech to Pope Francis

On Sunday, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas gave a clear message on the Palestinian issue that it is time to solve it and that there are obstacles – the settlements, the Judiazation of Jerusalem, but we are still committed to non-violent struggle and for dialogue. Pope Francis’s message to Palestine was that it must have internationally-recognized borders with two states that can live side-by-side in peace, equity, and reconciliation.

Read Pope Francis’s address to representatives of the Palestinian Authority

Continue reading “An Interview With Bishop Munib Younan On Pope Francis’s Visit to Jordan, Palestine, and Israel”

Diyar Consortium and Dar al-Kalima Inaugurate Sports Hall

BETHLEHEM, West Bank (AP) — Canadian speed skater Cindy Klassen, a six-time Olympic medalist, has helped inaugurate a $1.2 million indoor gym for Palestinian women in the biblical town of Bethlehem.

Women’s participation in sports is still relatively unusual in Palestinian society, which encourages gender separation in much of public life.

Several women’s soccer teams have formed, but they lack training facilities.

The 1,300-square-meter (14,000-square-feet) sports center opened Sunday, with funding from Canadian Lutheran World Relief and the Mt. Calvary Lutheran Church in the Canadian city of Calgary. The center will also offer space to volleyball and basketball teams as well as tennis players.

Klassen, 34, says that “women here in the West Bank don’t get many opportunities in sports.” She says she hopes the center will enable Palestinian women to train and build confidence.

To read the article in its original format, you can visit the AP website.

To read articles about the inauguration in Arabic, you can visit any of the links provided here:
Dar al-Kalima Schools
Palestine News Network
Atlas Sport

Dedication of Ad-Dar Cultural & Conference Center

On Monday, September 1, 2003, the long-awaited dedication and grand opening of the Ad-Dar Cultural and Conference Center alongside the Lutheran Christmas Church (ELCJ) in Bethlehem was held. Many guests came from Finland (the government of Finland gave generous financial support in building the Conference Center), the United States and other countries to join the Palestinian Church and people in celebrating the event. The International Center of Bethlehem (ICB) is a Lutheran based, ecumenically-oriented institution serving the whole Palestinian community. Through empowering the local community, developing human resources, cultivating artistic talents and facilitating intercultural encounters, the ICB actively promotes the building of Palestinian civil society. Another way of building the society is the Dar al-Kalima Academy which is a small community college facility offering training in music, arts and crafts, media, communication, cultural management, tourism and Christian ministry

Bishop Dr. Munib A. Younan, Ms. Paula Lehtomaki the Finnish Minister for Foreign Trade and Development, and Dr. Nabeel Kassis, Minister of Planning in the Palestinian Authority, Rev. Dr. Mitri Raheb along with Palestinian dignitaries, the ICB, church and academy staff celebrated the dedication and grand opening with many guests. Music was provided by the National Conservatory of Music at ICB. Bishop Younan said: “Music, arts and theology will help in building a modern civil society, teaching freedom of speech, opinion and expression. I pray that Ad-Dar would play an active role where the ELCJ is seen as empowering the powerless.”