The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad; the desert shall rejoice and blossom like the crocus; it shall blossom abundantly and rejoice with joy and singing. The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it, the majesty of Carmel and Sharon. They shall see the glory of the Lord, the majesty of our God.
Isaiah 35:1–10. (For the rest of the reading, click here. Follow our Facebook page for daily Scripture and pictures from the ELCJHL schools).
Students at the School of Hope in Ramallah paint a mural on the wall surrounding the school.
Give Now and Help the Students of the ELCJHL Blossom during our #AdventCountdown Giving Campaign
Every year, your support makes a huge difference to the 2,100+ students of the ELCJHL schools. These schools reach deep into the fabric of their respective communities and touch every aspect of life in Palestine.Your contribution to Opportunity Palestine helps:
Reduce tuition costs
Support after-school extracurricular programs such as table tennis, swimming, mediation club, and more
Provide materials for vocational training at the Evangelical Lutheran School in Beit Sahour mentioned in the article below
Give special-needs students the resources they need to succeed
The Evangelical Lutheran School in Beit Sahour offers unique courses in vocational studies. Vocational skills are an important part of life in Beit Sahour as many community members make their living in vocations that cater to the high number of tourists in the area. It also gives students a chance to learn a skill that they never thought they would.
Eighth-grade students Yasmin and Yuliana never thought they would work with machines, let alone be good at it. “When we first started we were afraid of the machines,” Yamin says. Their instructor Mr. Samar teaches students safe practices and encourages them to try. “Now we feel much better and it is normal for us to use the machines,” says Yuliana. The students create a variety of shapes out of wood including stars, trees, bells, and other festive shapes.
Pride in Their Work
The girls feel a sense of accomplishment being such strong students in a field that is usually dominated by men. “It feels really good…and it’s fun.” Yasmin shares. They giggle as they share about their experiences in the class. It is important for the full development of the students to be able to learn a new and useful skill. “I never thought I would try it and I didn’t expect that I would like it, but I really like it now.”
Left: Rinan, a teacher at Dar al-Kalima sits with her students for the annual Christmas play. Right: 4 Santas perform the annual Christmas play put on by Diyar Consortium.
An Advent Message & Prayerfrom Eamon of OP
Message: At times in our advocacy for Palestine, it can feel like we are wandering in the wilderness. With "weak hands" and "feeble knees," we cautiously tread through the desert, thirsting for justice, yet it seems to always remain just beyond our reach. However, we must be resolute and have faith that our efforts are not for naught and that in the end the Lord will provide—"The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad."
An Advent Prayer: God, strengthen our weak hands, and make firm our feeble knees. Say to those who have an anxious heart, “Be strong; fear not!” As we work to bring justice for Palestinians and foster hope in the hearts of the children of the ELCJHL schools. In this Advent, allow us to support the ELCJHL schools as they build God's Kingdom in the Holy Land.
Below, watch our latest film about the ELCJHL schools! Click here to read our fall newsletter!
Featuring high school students speaking in their own voice, the outcomes of the Lutheran Schools in the Holy Land are shared. The 4 schools start with preschool and continue to Grade 12 with co-educational classrooms and curriculum designed to support inquiry, creativity, leadership with inter-faith dialog, and peace resolution.