The Words of the Smith Family

Report from Jerusalem from Karen Smith

Karen Smith
May 27, 2004

Greetings from Jerusalem:

It is now Wednesday afternoon and the international teams will be returning from their outreach activities for the day. The small delegation of four is just now coming though the check point from Gaza and are expected to arrive around here in about an hour or so. The seminar room has been transformed into a venue for this evening's Bridge of Peace hosted by the WFWP. We are expecting the President of Hadassah Hospital, and the Principal and deputy of the Yad be Yad Bilingual School to join us along with several religious leaders, Ambassadors for Peace and local guests.

The evening will begin with plenty of networking between women from 33 nations and "single breath painting", refreshments and more. Tomorrow morning the group will begin the day with a Prayer Walk to the Western Wall, Al Aqsa Mosque and possibly into the Dome of the Rock. From there the teams will go out for final outreach, back for lunch and then on to the walk to Independence Park for the gathering of Women of Peace: Women Building Peace through Heart to Heart Reconciliation and Loving Service.

All this while, the Women's Task Force have been diligently visiting and following up on the guests that they have been contacting for the last month. Already they have gathered almost 50,000 signatures of support for this event, indicating they wish to attend. While we realize most will not come, Dr. and Mrs. Abe are looking forward to many people joining us in the Park. The Task Force have not only put many hours of effort, their hearts and their tears into the hearts of the people of this land, but also have deeply benefited from their time here.

We are simply building up the efforts of many to a crescendo that sustains from this evening for the next 24 hours.

We will send further reports later and we will gather testimonies, reports and more from the participants in the next few days.

Thank you one and all for your support. The women here have really dived right in as much of this work is "self-administrated." People arrived only to find out that they were helping create the teams, become part of the infrastructure etc. This international group of women from 33 nations coming together in quite remarkable ways, is notable.

Alexa Ward and Karen Smith

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