As summer approaches and Jerusalem gears up for festival time... we all look forward to the "Light in Jerusalem Festival!"
From the illumination of architecture to light statues, the festival is a public and family oriented celebration that artists from different fields collaborated in! It did have a very new age feel and theme to it over the years but none the less - it's pretty to look at!
A local church decided they were going to throw open their gates and allow those passing by to stop in and take advantage of the beautiful property and offer hospitality. The church, museum, coffee shop and restrooms were all open and available. Some of the staff gave away hot beverages and cookies.
The staff obviously worked hard on preparing the grounds with lights, movies and action (think a lone lady playing a guitar by the gate). It was all so very lovely!!
I was tucked into the little dwelling I consider home away from home... and I received a call stating ... "You and your friends should come now and take photos and video! We think there might be an incident tonight!"
We threw our dinner in the fridge (think elaborate preparations because it was Memorial Day weekend and we had contraband ...aka.. hot dogs ready to cook!)
We went to the church and low and behold .. there was an angry mob amassing outside the open gate. They were shouting out slurs ... such as .... "BEWARE MISSIONARIES" and things like... "They KILLED OUR BODIES, NOW they want to KILL YOUR SOUL".
They yelled and pushed. They stopped people from entering. They turned people away as they even approached to peek inside. One night in particular they had lights focused on the entrance way drive. Hebrew letters just danced on the pavement below.... the group swore curses were being placed on them. Literally!
It did get intense at times and police and lawyers had to be involved on several occasions. Soldiers and police stood close at hand to make sure things didn't get out of control and they didn't.
It was rather interesting tho how some pedestrians reacted. When told "Don't go in".. some became very insulted and replied with their actions - and came on in!
I believe that there were amazing seeds planted that night of LOVE and care ... I believe as the staff stood at the gates and were kind to everyone that the Love of Christ was shown.
Check out the newspaper clip :)
and this lovely video :)