A fellow colleague (for the ministry) and friend of mine has just started a blog (Oh my Cod) where he records what he tells us in an email, his life changing experience, during a spell in Israel/Palestine this summer with the Christian Peace maker teams.
the following sentence from his reflection during his second day in Israel caught my attention, in part5icualar as it is made in the context of reflection on archaeological research in Israel: “What is this theology of the land where the living are unimportant and the past is priceless?”
The full paragraph is: “We are taken to the Garden of David. The claim is made that this land is where King David drank tea in his garden overlooking Jerusalem. And so the archaeologists come in. Not state archaeologists but NGO’s. Ngo’s are given complete control over the area. And they strip all the soil, all the history away until they get to the Jewish level. The other stories of the past are but dust and rubble, of no interest, worthless. Archaeological war crimes. And the Palestinian homes, which rest on the earth, which hold the stories of the past, are of no interest, an inconvenience. Some are bought off, some are harassed and bullied to leave. One remains. The house is ‘worthless’ the ownership of the land is priceless. And we hear of offers of millions of dollars to sell but they stay. What is the land worth? What is a home worth? What is this theology of the land where the living are unimportant and the past is priceless?”