Scenes of Bethlehem

from 2012 service tour by Sheldon and Janis BurkhalterThis post is in conjunction with the December 29 Sermon by Sheldon Burkhalter

S. end of Manger Square is Church of the Nativity & Greek Orthodox Church
Manger Square in Bethlehem includes a mosque
Greek Orthodox church
Franciscan Church 0f the Nativity in Manger Square
Interior of Church of the Nativity which hosts annual Christmas service
In the Church of the Nativity Grotto is a cave--star indicates location of Jesus’ manger
Another cave in the Grotto is the tomb of Herod’s massacred children
Another cave in Grotto is tomb of St Jerome, translator of Vulgate, 5th century
Window inside Church of the Nativity in back of sanctuary
Typical cave outside the city of Bethlehem with more of a 1st century appearance
Graffiti in one of Bethlehem’s refugee camps—image of child’s behind is popular symbol of Palestinian refugees—5 million: largest refugee population in the world
Nakba sign - 64 (now 65) years since 'catastrophe' Zionist conquest of Palestine
Next to Wi’am Christian Peace Center‘s playground is section of 26’ high wall
Watchtower and u-turn around former main highway between Jerusalem and Hebron in West Bank
The Israeli checkpoint at Bethlehem—exterior looks like a large gymnasium
One of several security gates with voice commands and buzzers for several persons at a time entering the Israeli checkpoint at Bethlehem
Switchback for long lines through the Israeli checkpoint at Bethlehem
Tour buses can enter and leave Bethlehem thru a gate staffed by armed guards
View from checkpoint toward Bethlehem—from outside the wall notice olive grove, no graffiti, Rachel’s tomb in the center
View of Israeli settlement from Bethlehem and checkpoint in center right
Road blocked by military at entrance to Palestinian Nassar family farm Tent of Nations-6 mi. S. of Bethlehem surrounded by 9 illegal Israeli settlements
1 of 9 Israeli settlements between Nassar farm and Bethlehem--Muslim village in valley is slowly squeezed out—An Apartheid system worse than S. Africa’s-BishopTutu
Sign in 7 languages at entrance to Nassar farm Tent of Nations
Dahar Nassar bycampers’ mosaic ofa Christian & Muslim in dialog
Daoud Nassar speaks to visitors in a cave on Nassar farm Tent of Nations
A settlement and watchtower overlooking Tent of Nations
Lutheran Christmas Church up the street from Nativity Square, Bethlehem
Pastor Mitri Raheb, Marburg Univ. Germany doctorate—book tells stories of Israeli military occupation of Christmas Lutheran Church 2002—an author in Kairos Palestine document
In Christmas Lutheran worship—Tony Nassar in front in blue
Dahar & Daoud Nassar & families after church at Christmas Lutheran
Nassar sisters Naheda Thaljieh and Amah Nassar after worship service coffee
Daoud Nassar’s daughter playing classical piece in Lutheran Center concert—sign of hope