Al-Liqa’ Center for Religious and Heritage Studies in the Holy Land
Al-Liqa’ Center’s Annual Celebration of Christmas
Bethlehem Hotel – Bethlehem
On Friday evening, 16 December 2011, a Christmas Celebration was held at the invitation of Al-Liqa’ Center in the Bethlehem Hotel. Two hundred persons, Christians and Muslims attended this celebration. Dr. Geries S. Khoury opened the ceremonies by pointing out that the message of Christians is a message of hope; love the rejuvenation of faith which is our source of strength, and steadfastness and shared living. Prof. Thiab Ayyoush, Deputy President of Al-Liqa’s Board greeted Christian and Muslim attendees. Melkite Catholic Bishop Butros Mu’allem presented a biblical reading of Christmas and its spiritual meaning; while Sheikh ‘Abd Al-Majeed ‘Ata, Mufti of Bethlehem, greeted fellow Christians stressing in the process national unity. Melkite Orthodox Bishop Atallah Hanna, likewise, stressed national unity.
Mr. Nayef Khoury and author Fathi Furani presented Christian and Muslim reflections. Attorney ‘Ali Rafe’ presented Qur’anic recitation of the birth of ‘Isa (Jesus). Mr. Laurence Sammour and Dr. Charlie Abu Sa’da chanted eastern Christmas carols, while young Maya Handal accompanied on the Org by her mother Reem Handal sang Christmas carols.
At the end of the evening program the participants were invited to have dinner together.