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Israel/Palestine


A wonderful map of Israel.

Israel/Palestine

World Convention is currently building a global reference for the  countries and territories where we know there are Christian – Churches of Christ – Disciples of Christ Congregations. Of the 193 United Nations States, the Stone-Campbell Movement exists in 174. This listing includes other nations and territories, numbering 194 countries where there is at least one representation of our churches.

Rather than waiting for comprehensive, complete information we are putting up the details we have available. If you can correct or add to this information, please contact the World Convention Office with details at gary@worldconvention.org.

Background

The State of Israel borders Lebanon in the north, Syria in the northeast, Jordan and Palestine in the east, Egypt and the Gaza Strip on the southwest, and the Gulf of Aqaba in the Red Sea to the south. In 1948, following the United Nations partition of Palestine, the state of Israel was founded. Neighboring Arab countries invaded Palestine immediately, the first of wars resulting in Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, Sinai Peninsula (between 1967 and 1982), part of South Lebanon (between 1982 and 2000), Gaza Strip and the Golan Heights. Israel has signed peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan, but efforts to resolve the Israeli–Palestinian conflict have so far not resulted in peace.

Religion

Israel is officially a Jewish state. Muslims are 16% of the population, 2% of the population are Christian, and 1.5% are Druze.

Stone-Campbell Presence

Churches of Christ came to Israel in 1960 through the work of Ralph Henley and Ernest Stewart. Joseph Shulam, a convert of Stewart, began a congregation in Tell Aviv and later became the leader of the Netivyah Bible Instruction Ministry and of Roeh Israel, “Shepherd of Israel,” a Messianic Jewish Congregation in Jerusalem. In 1966, Stewart also began Galilee Christian High School in Eilaboun and a congregation in Nazareth among Palestinians. Palestinian Raji Stephan is a longtime missionary in Ramallah. In 1996, eighteen members of Churches of Christ in the United States planted the Jerusalem Church of Christ. The group in 2013 is a mixed fellowship, with members from Israeli, Palestinian-Arab,Russian, American, and Armenian backgrounds.

The Division of Overseas Ministries of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) partners with B’Tselem, Christmas Lutheran Church in Bethlehem, Diyar Consortium, East Jerusalem YMCA (Palestine), Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel, Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land, Friends Meeting in Ramallah, Kairos Palestine, Rawdat el-Zuhur (Palestine), Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center (Jerusalem), Tantur Ecumenical Institute,and the YWCA of Palestine (Palestine).

The Christian HolyLand Foundation, associated with Christian Churches/Churches of Christ,  formed in the early 1980s for the purpose of sharing the Gospel message in the Holy Land. For more than 20 years that mission was carried out through affiliation with George Awwad, a Christian Arab minister living in East Jerusalem. Following George’s unexpected death in 2003, CHLF supported an already existing team of six couples in the Galilee.

International Churches of Christ have congregations in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

 

Jerusalem Church of Christ http://www.jerusalemchurchofchrist.org/

Netivyah http://www.netivyah.org

Galilee Christian High School http://www.gc-hs.org

 

Created by Gary Holloway, December 5, 2013