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Preparing to Go

 

PILGRIMAGE IN ISRAEL AND PALESTINE
PREPARING TO GO

Presbyterians understand Christian faith to occur at the intersection of the divine and the human, the ancient and the contemporary, and the prayerful and the just. Pilgrimages should feed that faith and empower our lives of discipleship. Amid the many kinds of Holy Land trips that are available, we feel that faithful journeys have several common characteristics. We strongly encourage you to ensure your journey includes as many of these Six Elements as possible:

  • Significant time visiting local Christians and church leaders as well as the holy sites

  • Significant time in the Palestinian Territories (West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza) as well as in Israel

  • Opportunities to meet Israeli and Palestinian peacemakers

  • Opportunities to engage in interfaith discussions with a range of perspectives

  • Opportunities to establish partnerships and relationships with congregations, organizations, and individuals in the region

  • Upon return, opportunities to work for peace and justice, particularly through faithful advocacy among congregations, community groups, and government

The first four objectives were emphasized in a 
resolution passed overwhelmingly at the 2008 
General Assembly. Read the
entire resolution
(Paragraph 5 explicitly addresses travel.)

RESOURCES FOR DISCERNMENT AND PREPARATION:

+ "Top Ten Questions" to ask about your Holy Land trip.

+ "A Code of Conduct" created by the Palestinian Initiative for Responsible Tourism.

+ The New Jersey Israel-Palestine Education Group (a state-wide Presbyterian Task Force supported by six Presbyteries) has guidelines for their pilgrimages, including a preparatory reading list.

+ Avail yourself of  PC(USA)'s Israel and Palestine pages as well as the resources elsewhere on this site.

+ The people in our network are fantastic resources, eager to help you. Connect with us at:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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