Amal Nassar is profiled as one of “12 Inspiring Women.”
By Graham Hill / Global Church Network
July 4, 2017
Amal Nassar told me a moving story about reconciliation, when I interviewed her. A few years ago, she unexpectedly chanced upon a woman jogging past her farm. The woman was an Israeli settler.
The woman said to Amal, “What are you doing out here, in the middle of nowhere?”
Amal replied, “This is my family farm. We’ve lived here for more than 100 years.”
Incredulous, the Israel settler replied, “That’s not true. No-one lives here. This is empty land. Where are the houses and roads?”
“Our homes are built among the caves,” replied Amal, “and all these vineyards you see are ours.”
This is the second in my series 12 Inspiring Women, looking at twelve passionate, courageous, prophetic Christian women, who inspire us to think deeply, act courageously, embrace others, and bring hope to the world. You can read the first one here.
A few years ago, I had the chance to visit The Tent of Nations, which is in the West Bank in the Palestinian Territories. There I met Amal Nassar, a Palestinian Christian committed to nonviolence, peacemaking, and reconciliation.
The Tent of Nations is a family farm, owned by a Palestinian Christian family. Its mission is “to build bridges between people, and between people and the land. We bring different cultures together to develop understanding and promote respect for each other and our shared environment. To realize this mission, we run educational projects at Daher’s Vineyard, our organic farm, located in the hills southwest of Bethlehem, Palestine. Our farm is a center where people from many different countries come together to learn, to share, and to build bridges of understanding and hope.”
I was delighted to talk with Amal Nassar about The Tent of Nations, and record their story and vision. Sitting in one of the beautiful caves on their property, we talked about justice, peace, and reconciliation in Israel-Palestine.
Covering the walls of the cave are paintings and words about peace and reconciliation (written in many languages). In front of the cave is a large stone that says: “We refuse to be enemies.” It was a moving experience for me.
Amal Nassar and her Palestinian Christian family preach non-violence from their farm in the West Bank. They’ve been battling to hold on to their land, while Israeli settlements encroach (they’ve owned this land in the West Bank for 100 years). Now surrounded by Israeli settlements, the family is a living example of the idea of peaceful resistance.
The BBC recently ran a fascinating piece on The Tent of Nations. Guided by a vision for building bridges between Israelis and Palestinians, and moved by a dream for hope, understanding, reconciliation, dialogue, and peace, Amal Nassar and her family have transformed their West Bank farm into a center for peace-building, non-violent resistance, and Israeli-Palestinian reconciliation, called the Tent of Nations.