April 2022 - First Friday Letter

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First Friday Letter The World Methodist Council

April 2022

Greetings from the General Secretary Greetings in the name of our Crucified and Risen Lord, Jesus Christ! Just as we began to contemplate a post-Covid world hoping that 2022 would hold better prospects to return to some level of normality, the crisis in Ukraine surfaced. The war between Russia and Ukraine has claimed thousands of lives and made millions of Ukrainians refugees. Ironically, we presented three World Methodist Council Peace Awards in the same month that we witnessed the horrors of war. All acts of violence and violation awaken the moral conscience and ask us to determine what is acceptable, right, and fair. Representatives of the World Methodist Council participated in an ecumenical prayer service on Ash Wednesday where invocation and intercession flowed from fountains of prayers for an end to war. We are encouraged by the work and witness of member churches responding to the growing humanitarian crisis and embracing refugees. In common with those of other world religions, Christian scriptures compels us to show hospitality to strangers and protect the most vulnerable in society. (Leviticus 19:33-44, Matthew 25:35-36) A few weeks ago, the World Methodist Council issued a statement condemning the invasion. (Read the Statement Here) We also affirmed the Acting General Secretary of the World Council of Churches appeal to the leaders of the Russian Federation and Ukraine to “stop the war immediately.” (Read the Statement Here) With increased global tensions and now the full-scale war in Ukraine, I encourage you to read, The Challenge to Peace: God’s Promise our Response – A Pastoral Letter on War and Peace (May 3, 1983, National Conference of Catholic Bishops) and the Ecumenical Call to Just Peace as well as Just Peace Companion (May 2011, World Council of Churches). These publications are timely reminders that war and violence are not the way to solve severe conflicts in society. May God “guide our feet in the way of peace” (Luke 1:79) to have a fresh encounter with the Living Lord, Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace who overcame death; hence Christians the world over this Easter will boldly proclaim, “The Lord is risen! He is risen indeed.” I pray that we will hold on to this assurance so that love and peace may abound in our hearts in the communities we inhabit. Shalom Ivan

Photo 48722454 / Easter Peace © Saravn | Dreamstime.com

World Methodist Council

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Bhogal receives 2018 World Methodist Peace Award The Rev. Dr. Inderjit Bhogal received the World Methodist Peace Award in front of 300 family members, friends, British Methodist Church officials, Sheffield City officials, and others who celebrated with him his lifelong work that had assisted so many vulnerable, underserved and migrating people. World Methodist Council General Secretary Bishop Ivan Abrahams presented the certificate and gold medal award on behalf of the Council which represents more than 80 million Methodists in 134 countries. “You are all remarkable people, peacemakers,” Dr. Bhogal told those in Victoria Hall Methodist Church where the ceremony was held. “And every act of grace, generosity, and hospitality from a smile and kind greeting to tackling oppression and intimidation is an important step in helping to build a better world. I am standing here today because you have taken on the vision I have shared and its various relationships including the City of Sanctuary and homeless and ruthless people,” he said.

The Rev. Dr. Inderjit Bhogal with his grandson.

In presenting the certificate, Bishop Abrahams read examples of courage, creativity and consistency that Bhogal had shown from the time he was a college student through today, as he worked to serve those most often overlooked by society.

The Rev. Dr. Inderjit Bhogal standing in the front row accompanied by his family at the award ceremony.

The Rev. Dr. Inderjit Bhogal receives the Peace Award for 2018 for his work with migrant and underserved populations from WMC General Secretary Ivan Abrahams. World Methodist Council

Story and Photos by JRB First Friday Letter page 2

2020 Peace Award Presented “Bishop Yambasu’s legacy continues to live on through projects and people who are agents of reconciliation and peace. He was a true reconciler and peacebuilder.” - General Secretary Ivan Abrahams The World Methodist Council awarded Bishop John K. Yambasu the 2020 World Methodist Peace Award during the 142nd Session of the Sierra Leone Annual Conference. Bishop Yambasu’s widow Millicent Yambasu received the award on his behalf. Archbishop Michael Kehinde Stephen member of the WMC Steering Committee presented the award.

Pictured left to right Archbishop Michael Kehinde Stephen and Millicent Yambasu

“Bishop John Yambasu is irreplaceable in the life and mission of The United Methodist Church. He was the voice for health, justice and peace in all matters sacred and secular. He had keen insights into the current situation and future potential for The United Methodist Church in Africa and around the world. His lifelong experience in the church – growing up in mission schools, attending Candler School of Theology in Atlanta, serving as pastor, teacher and missionary—prepared him for outstanding leadership across boundaries.” - Thomas Kemper, UMC Photo taken by Thomas Kemper in 2018 at the Burundi Reunification Annual Conference World Methodist Council

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Rev. Parnamets receives 2021 Peace Award The Rev. Olav Parnamets was presented with the World Methodist Council Peace Award by General Secretary Bishop Ivan Abrahams on March 13. Surrounded by his family, the UMC Nordic-Baltic Presiding Bishop Christian Alstead, Estonian District Superintendent Robert Tserenkov, and others, Parnamets said this was another sign of God’s grace to him. The ceremony focused on not only Parnamets’ lifetime of accomplishments of service and his courage and creativity, but his continuing influence. “I am reminded of a very strong old tree when I think of you,” Bishop Alstead said, “with very deep and well-grounded roots in Jesus Christ and very strong branches above reaching out in many directions, where people seek guidance and shelter.” He also reminded Rev. Parnamets of many people who honor him, take pride in him and love him. Bishop Abrahams thanked Parnamets for his continuing service in the face of adversity, especially under the USSR, and how he had given so many hope and courage. He also thanked the family and especially Rev. Parnamets’ wife, Urve, who had been a dedicated servant. Humbly accepting the prestigious award, Rev. Parnamets said he did not feel deserving, but it was one of God’s many gifts he had received, it was through grace, amazing grace. With sparkling eyes, and sometimes a voice that conveyed the strong emotions he felt, he shared some stories from his years of work. Estonian District Superintendent Tserenkov presented him with thanks and a dozen red roses, saying he was a reason why the Methodist Church had become what it is today. A theological school is part of the facility, and the modern building offers pastoral studies to students from a number of countries in addition to Estonia, including Russia and Ukraine. The building is a city landmark and its spire is visible from many places in Tallinn.

Rev. Olav Parnamets, received the 2020 World Methodist Peace Award on 13 March 2022 from General Secretary Bishop Ivan Abrahams, left, joined by presiding Bishop Christian Alstead, right, of the Nordic-Baltic region. Dr Fernand de Varennes World Methodist Council

Rev. Olav Parnamets and his wife, Urve with UMC District Superintendent of Estonia Robert Tserenkov

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‘Seeing the stone removed’ John 20:1-18 We thank God that this Easter, restrictions have been removed that had prevented people visiting the Holy Land for the last couple of years, because of the coronavirus. The restrictions which have meant a lack of movement and freedom, have caused frustration for all around the world. Not being able to travel to meet loved ones or celebrate important milestones in each other’s lives in person. As restrictions began to lift for the fifth time it started to feel like it could be coming to an end, coming out of the dark tomb, into a place of resurrection, being able to breathe again, feel the sunshine, freedom, hope. But just as a new day was dawning, we were shocked by the horrors of an invasion unfolding, innocent people suffering, death, refugees. Tales of bravery unfolded in the face of occupation, as many nations supported Ukraine. There was an expectation the war would be over quickly, how wrong the experts were, they had not taken into account the boldness, bravery and resilience of the Ukrainian people. They weren’t prepared for the people to fight for their land, the future of their families, a future of a life of democracy, holding on to hope. Here in the Holy land, tourists are returning, pilgrims travelling to Jerusalem during Lent on a personal journey to the place where hope was born. Once again, crowds will lift their palms shouting ‘Hosanna’, as full of joy, they walk down the Mount of Olives singing their praises ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord’. There will be services throughout Holy Week preparing hearts to celebrate Easter joy. We will praise God for ‘the stone that was removed’, not removed to let Jesus out of the tomb, but to let the disciples enter and see it was empty. We will rejoice and give thanks for the resurrection of Jesus, for the empty tomb, for death overcome. The disciples looked into the empty tomb and ‘believed’, Mary encountered the risen Christ on that glorious morning. As we read the account we too are drawn into seeing the stone removed, and an empty tomb, to reflect and respond to the risen Christ, Christ is risen He is risen indeed! As we journey towards Jerusalem this Easter through scripture and our worship, spare a thought for parts of the population here that haven’t yet seen physical stone walls be removed. Whose restrictions and right to freedom of movement is still not a reality. For those who long see an end to occupation, to travel the 6km down the road from Bethlehem to Jerusalem, as we see in the artist’s impression of desires and hopes painted on the separation wall. For those who hold onto resurrection hope, whose hearts turn to worship Christ from behind stone walls and for whom some still feel they live and glimpse his resurrection from inside a man-made tomb. As we pray for peace for Ukrainians and Russians, may we continue to pray for peace, and an end of all forms of occupation people here and others around the world face on a daily basis. Pray for peace as the most holy festivals Easter, Ramadan and the Passover are celebrated at the same time this year. A time intended for the three faiths to commemorate their precious festivals, that can easily become a time of restrictions, tensions, frustrations and violence. May we this Easter in the Holy Land, and wherever we are in the world, lift our gaze, hearts, and worship to the Holy One, who removed the stone, who could not be contained by grave clothes and who rose from the injustice and pain. In suffering death love, life, hope and freedom were offered for all. May we long for and pray for such reality for all. Lord in your mercy, hear our prayers. Blessed Easter from the place of hope. Christ is risen, He is risen indeed! Angleena Keizer Methodist Liaison Office in Jerusalem

World Methodist Council

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What Must I Do? Bishop Abrahams brought greetings from the World Methodist Council and preached at both the Estonian-speaking service and the Russian-speaking service at Tallinn Methodist Church, using the question What Must I Do, and referencing three scriptures. He said a lot of people find themselves like the rich farmer and the jailor - they have a lot of security but no freedom. He pointed out that money can buy a house but not a home, an education but not wisdom, a bed but not peaceful sleep, influence but not respect, and medicine but not health. Among the points he made in his sermons was the fact that real peace and joy are only found in Jesus, adding Christianity is a counter-culture to the system of this world. “We belong to Christ, who loves us,” he reminded everyone.

Ivan Abrahams preached a morning Estonian service and afternoon Russian service at Tallinn Methodist Church.

A Catalyst for Hope As a connection point for the worldwide Methodist Wesleyan family, World Methodist Evangelism enables our global partners to support one another for a stronger witness to the transformative love of God in Jesus Christ. In the wake of the invasion of Ukraine, WME is standing in the gap for ministry to refugees. WME’s ministry, Connect419 provides a channel for funding to support the work of our partners in Ukraine, Romania, Slovakia, and Czech Republic. To date we have received over $35,000. These funds have gone to provide housing and other needs for refugees who have fled Ukraine, along with specific help for orphans. We have also been able to provide medical, food, and others supplies for those remaining in Ukraine.

If you would like to support this important work, please visit the World Methodist Evangelism website. https://worldmethodist.org/donate/ukraine/

Though we have strong partners in Slovakia and Czech Republic, our strongest partnership is with the United Methodist Church in Romania where significant work is being done in collaboration with the United Methodist Church in Ukraine. You can follow much of the work by visiting the Light from Light UMC – Sibiu Romania Facebook page at https:// www.facebook.com/lightfromlightumc/ World Methodist Council

Pastor Cristian Istrate greets Ukrainian children at Light from Light UMC in Sibiu, Romania First Friday Letter page 6

Working with/for Refugees from Ukraine General Situation

situation, there is a willingness for a cooperation. The UMC in Czechia, for instance, is currently The number of refugees from Ukraine is still in- negotiating with the Municipal District Office in creasing. The refugees are mostly women with Plzen about a cooperation in regard to the crechildren. Sometimes there are elderly people – ation of a children’s group for Ukrainian children, and sometimes there are also big families. Ac- which would be under the auspices of the United cording to Leading Superintendent Andrzej Malic- Methodist center for children located in this town. ki from Poland, men can join their families and leave Ukraine if they have 3+ children. The Diakonia of the UMC in Czechia is currently arranging and organizing accommodation for People in general are still welcoming and open up refugees in three facilities – two belonging to their hearts, their hands, and their houses to help the UMC (Veselka near Vimperk / Poušt near Bethe refugees wherever they can. Milán Mutschler, chyne), one borrowed. The final intended total coordinator of the work with/for refugees of the capacity of all three buildings will be about 100 UMC in Hungary, writes: “The storages are full of beds. All of these facilities require staffing and donations at the border and the NGOs are very cooperation with the local government: a doctor, active. Lots of ordinary people open their homes, an interpreter, and crisis intervention need to be go to the railway stations, apply for volunteering, available all the time. donate food or other materials, take up refugees by car.” There is also a helpful cooperation with local institutions such as a Food Bank in ceské BudeSarah Putman, coordinator of the work with/for jovice or the Masaryk High School in Plzen, the refugees of the UMC in Romania, adds: “There is latter offering Czech language courses for both some balancing pressure for those Romanians Ukrainian children and their parents who want to needing to find accommodations in hotels or stay in Czechia and not move further to the West. universities who cannot now, but even there it doesn’t change the attitude of wanting to wel- The cooperation of different Churches – Evangelcome refugees.” ical, Reformed, Lutheran, Roman-Catholic, Orthodox – is helpful, particularly when it comes to find But there are also other emotions. Ivana Procház- accommodations at very short notice. Bence Vigh, ková, District Superintendent of the UMC in Cze- pastor of the UMC in Hungary, writes: “Now we chia writes in a short meditation: “We have en- can boldly ask each other. And the doors open.” countered many fears in the last few days. Fear And Rares Calugar, District Superintendent of the for the lives of those we love, fear for our own UMC in Romania, mentions the example of an ellives, fear for the lives of innocent and defenseless derly couple that, with the help of the UMC, found old people, children, fear for the lives of soldiers a permanent housing at an Orthodox monastery drawn into war, we have experienced fear of the until they can return to their home country. Zaporozhye nuclear plant explosion, Chernobyl, fear of the spread of war from Ukraine further west. We feared for the future of Europe, of our civilization, we feared what price for peace the Ukrainians would pay, what price we ourselves would pay.” State / Regional / Municipal Authorities – Ecumenical Cooperation – NGOs The political authorities in the countries directly or indirectly bordering to Ukraine are very active, and where they already know from the past – or where they are observing now – that the UMC is a truly reliable partner being able to make a helpful contribution towards dealing with the current

Photo from a language course in Czechia. Continued on Page 8

World Methodist Council

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Working with/for Refugees from Ukraine According to Sarah Putman, the UMC in Romania cooperates with other NGOs, for instance in order to find safe places for Ukrainian families who want to stay longer term – but also for those who want to stay temporarily only. They also cooperate with local area restaurants in order to provide the refugees with meals. Milán Mutschler writes about the cooperation with several Churches and NGOs in Hungary, and he particularly mentions the Ecumenical Aid Service, by the support of which relief aid is brought to United Methodist and other congregations in the most western part of Ukraine, just on the other side of the border. There are also emergency relief points on the Hungarian side of the border, which are run in ecumenical cooperation. Again, the overall attitude of people is still welcoming and open. There are, however, also signs of negative implications of a “positive discrimination” (i.e. of treating Ukrainian refugees differently in a positive way). The Czech government, for instance, provides refugees with small amounts of money to help with beginnings, or it simplifies the way to obtain visa and work permit. This, on the one hand, allows a number of refugees to become self-sufficient. On the other hand, it may also contribute to the reality that Jana Krízova, pastor and coordinator of the work with/for refugees of the UMC in Czechia, describes as follows: that there are also people who start to complain. Every Day is Different


countries. But Sarah Putman in Romania says that “now, many are staying longer term”. In those situations where the refugees are staying for a very short time only – one night, two nights, three nights – a considerable flexibility of the helpers is required, and the volunteers are working hard as far as preparing meals, doing the laundry, etc. is concerned. “There is some overwhelmedness on the part of laborers”, says Sarah Putman, “as we adjust to the new normal hours/schedule/ needs/priority of helping our new friends while still maintaining other ministry programming.” A newsletter from Czechia also mentions the importance of volunteers: “This work is only possible through the dedicated work of local church members and professionals who are willing to give up their free time for this cause.” Not only every day is different, the people coming are different, as well. Some of them are beautifully dressed, some of them wear very old clothes, some of them come from Donbas, others from north-eastern parts of the country, others from more western regions. Some of them speak foreign languages, some of them only speak Ukrainian (the latter emphasizing the need to cooperate with people who can understand/speak this language and to start as quickly as possible with offering language courses for those who would like to stay in the country). What all of these people have in common is the longing for a safe place, security, peace, a hopeful future – and in many cases the fear for family members still living in Ukraine.

Many people coming to Poland, Czechia, Slova- Story and photo by The United Methodist Church kia, Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria still want Central Conference of Central and Southern Euto continue their journey towards more Western rope

Display in front of Russian Embassy in Tallinn showing solidarity with Ukraine. Photo by JRB World Methodist Council

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WesleyMen seek examples of Hope Greetings from WesleyMen! Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! We pray God’s most abundant blessing upon each of the churches here represented, joining you in the sure faith that the church is of God and will endure until the end of time.

share an information “resource” assembled from around the world, stories of how God’s people are being merciful with people “On the Move.” Will you help? You may select one or more of these ways, or perhaps another of your design:

 Tell us who among your churches or denominations is responding to refugees – contact inforIn response to the Council’s “quinquennial” mation is a big help. theme, “On the Move,” we are deeply saddened by the plight of the many who “move” as refu-  Share a story about the work as you understand gees – displaced peoples of all kinds. Lately, we it, either written or a video – or both. are witnessing the horror of the Ukrainian people fleeing violence.  If you are unaware of such work, will you offer a referral to a church leader or one in the mission According to the United Nations Refugee Agen- field? This may be from a local church, a regioncy (UNHCR), people may be “displaced” for many al body or a denomination. An email address is reasons: seeking asylum (asylees), internally dis- most helpful. placed, stateless, returnees, factors religious or political, war, hunger, climate, discrimination for Contact us at WesleyMen using stevehickle@wesgender. leymen.org. We seek examples (stories!) of how our Methodist, Wesleyan and Uniting churches are responding to God’s call upon us to “welcome the stranger.” Does your judicatory have such a ministry in place? Or your denomination? Or your congregation, the community with which you worship? Here’s why we want to know: At the 2024 World Methodist Conference, WesleyMen expects to

Thank you so very much for your consideration! As Wesley’s people, together we will live into our calling to “Do good!” In service of Christ the Lord, Reverend Steven A. Hickle President, WesleyMen World Methodist Council

WMC Preparatory Meetings for the 11th Assembly of the World Council of Churches “Christ’s Love Moves the World towards Reconciliation and Unity”. This is the theme of the 11th Assembly of the World Council of Churches in Karlsruhe, Germany, scheduled for August 31 to September 8, 2022. The World Methodist Council organizes two Webinars in preparation for the Assembly, the first webinar scheduled for Tuesday April 26, the second end of June or early July. Paying attention to the various time zones around the globe, we offer two options to dial in 9 am CEST or 8 pm CEST. Delegates, observers, and guests who plan to come to Germany and belong to a member church of the World Methodist Council and all who are interested in the WCC Assembly planning are heartily invited to join these meetings. We will share information on the Assembly, introduce main topics, learn more about procedures and logistics and start to get to know one another so that we will be able to support one another at the Assembly. Please follow the link to register: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_SOjMbGCaTvaOXIzzFm_F0w

World Methodist Council

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2022 Peace Award Nominees If you have been planning to nominate someone who exemplifies Courage, Creativity, and Consistency for the World Methodist Peace Award, you must act now. Applications submitted by July 15 will be considered for this year. Any application received after July 15 will be reviewed later for 2023. Note, all supporting documents must be included. The nominee should show courage in regard to physical danger or putting personal interest at risk. Creativity should include opening new initiatives and attracting others in working for the cause of peace, Consistency is judged by effort over a period of time and intensity, despite setbacks. Here is the link to read the full criteria: http://worldmethodistcouncil.org/whatwedo/world-methodist-peace-award/ The recipient receives a medallion, citation and US $1000 which is symbolic of the larger recognition achieved in working for peace, justice and reconciliation. The recipient is included in the World Methodist Council Peace award booklet and their photo is hung on the wall of the World Methodist Council Headquarters with other recipients of this prestigious award. Go to www.worldmethodistcouncil.org and click on the “About the WM Peace Award” tab on the left side of the homepage and complete the online application. Please send all nomination forms to Bishop Ivan Abrahams at info@worldmethodistcouncil.org.

The Centre for Faith in Public Life at Wesley House is hosting a series of events at Pentecost exploring faith questions arising in the context of migration. Our contributors bring to bear experience of migration in the Pacific, in Europe and in Central America. Join us in person or online to explore this pressing topic. Further information and to register for this free event can be found here - https:// bit.ly/CrossesBorders

World Methodist Council

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“Welcome back!” - to Hebron in the West Bank John Howard reports on the reopening of EAPPI For many years the Methodist Church has supported the World Council of Churches’ Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI) as it trains interested people to accompany, observe, report and advocate. The programme was started in 2002 as a result of an appeal by the church leaders in Jerusalem for people from outside the land we call Holy, to “come see - go tell.” Accompanying Palestinians, and Israeli peace activists - by internationals who have the privilege of being outsiders to the situation, and have the international networks where they report what they see - has the effect of reducing violence. It is known as “Protective Presence,” and has been used to good effect in many conflict zones. The global COVID pandemic meant that the teams of volunteers were withdrawn. In 2022 a new team was sent for the first time since the pandemic, largely consisting of experienced volunteers. As a result I am now serving in Hebron. The city of Hebron, the second largest Palestinian City in the West Bank, has the dubious distinction of being the only city in the West Bank, outside Jerusalem, with Israeli settlements right in the centre of the city. As a result it is divided into two areas, H1 and H2. H1 the Palestinian Authority is responsible. The Israeli Government handles security and planning in H2. Conditions there are amongst the most harsh faced by any Palestinians. Soldiers enter houses regularly, they count kitchen knives and even one out of place may mean an arrest. About 35,000 Palestinians live in H2 alongside something like 800 Israeli settlers. Protecting the settlers are approximately 2,000 Israeli soldiers, even though the settlers live there in contravention of international law (Article 49 of the 4 th Geneva Convention). It makes for one of the most tense - and indeed volatile - cities in the West Bank. Hebron’s problems are not however limited to the H2 area. Israeli soldiers make frequent incursions into the Palestinian controlled area and they use tear gas, sound bombs and live fire indiscriminately. As is often the case in communities traumatized by the military there is also an increasing amount of violence within Palestinian communities. This is the background to the lives of those who call Hebron home, and to our day by day experience too. As we arrived the weather was going from bad to worse, and on the second day here we had the heaviest snow fall for many years so since there was little heating in the placement apartment - we really were cold! World Methodist Council

In contrast the welcome from Palestinians has been so warm and friendly. Everywhere we walk whether with the EAPPI vests on or not - we have people saying “Welcome back,” everywhere we go, that is, except from soldiers and settlers in H2! But life in Hebron is never predictable, no two days are the same. After witnessing a particularly violent incident, we passed through a police cordon and a young Palestinian smiled and said to us “Welcome to Hebron... have a nice day!” Most mornings we help make sure children get to school safely. Children attending the Cordoba school have to pass through two checkpoints staffed by Israeli soldiers and walk along Shohada Street, once the main shopping street of Hebron - now more like a ghost town. It’s an intimidating place for anyone, but for six, seven and eight year olds, and indeed some as young as four going to the kindergarten, (whose parents are not allowed to accompany them through the checkpoints) facing this daily is an ongoing trauma. We walk with the children, talk to them, try out our Arabic on them, as they try their English! “Good Morning ...How are you?” Often their English is better than my Arabic! Sometimes it can be difficult - we have been pushed and kicked by settlers, and frequently stopped by the soldiers - but the staff of the school are clear that our presence helps the children. Indeed a previous head teacher has said it’s thanks to outsiders like us, providing some protection by our presence, that enabled the school to welcome more girls. Hebron is not an easy place to be, but working as a team, with the support and prayers of many from across the world who support the programme, and by the grace of God, EAPPI is up and running again. We long for the time when it won’t be necessary. John Howard is the former District Chair of the Wolverhampton and Shrewsbury District and worked for two years as a Mission Partner at the Methodist Liaison Office in Jerusalem.

Photo from EAPPI webpage

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Photo credits: Perkins School of Theology/ R. Hipps

Please send press releases, articles and resources! Submissions should be a page or less (450-650 words), edited and ready to publish. Contact us by Monday, April 25 at communications@worldmethodistcouncil. org if you would like your story to be included in the May edition of the First Friday Letter.

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About the First Friday Letter

This and past First Friday Letters can be found online at FirstFridayLetter.worldmethodistcouncil.org.

The First Friday Newsletter is a monthly publication of the World Methodist Council.

The World Methodist Council’s website may be found at worldmethodistcouncil.org.

Publisher: Bishop Ivan Abrahams, General Secretary

The World Methodist Council’s Conference website is at worldmethodistconference.org.

Communications: Michaela Bryson

To subscribe to this newsletter, please email communications@worldmethodistcouncil.org.

All stories and photos, unless otherwise stated, are protected by their respective copyrights. Please do not copy without expressed written permission from the Council.

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