- Paperback: 168 pages
- Publisher: Wipf & Stock Pub (April 16, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1620326256
- ISBN-13: 978-1620326251
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 7 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,248,080 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Letters from Apartheid Street: A Christian Peacemaker in Occupied Palestine Paperback – April 27, 2013
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"Our field needspassionate, on-the-ground, firsthand descriptions of the challenges ofconstructively engaging ... conflict. McRay's book provides ...such"
- John PaulLederach, author of The Moral Imagination
"Surprisingly invitational ... worth reading and rereading"
- Kathy Kelly,Nobel Peace Prize Nominee
"A valuable resource"
- Brian D. McLaren, author of A New Kind of Christianity
"Down-to-earth yet profound"
- Marc H. Ellis, author of Toward a Jewish Theology of Liberation
"As unflinchingly faithful to the Christian gospel as a book can possiblybe"
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"Invaluable, necessary,and absolutely brilliant"
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"...Fascinating,stirring, provocative and thought-provoking..."
- Richard Beck, authorof award-winning blog Experimental Theology
"An important read"
- Tarek Abuata, Christian Peacemaker Teams
"Pay serious heed to Michael McRay"
- David Dark, author of Life's Too Short to Pretend You're NotReligious
- Gary M. Burge, author of Jesus and the Land
"This book matters ... listen closely"
- Paul Alexander, author of Pentecostals and Nonviolence
"Compelling, honest, and engrossing "
- Chris Haw, co-author of Jesus for President
"Invites us into new realms of social justice and peacemaking"
- Rev. Stephen Sizer, author of Christian Zionism
"A personal and passionate account"
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- Bruce T. Morrill, SJ, author/professor at Vanderbilt Divinity School
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- Richard C. Goode, editor of And the Criminals With Him
About the Author
Michael T. McRay received his BA in History from Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee, earning regional and national awards for his senior thesis comparing European colonialism and the Israeli occupation. In addition to his internship with Christian Peacemaker Teams, Michael has worked and traveled extensively in the West Bank in various capacities. He is currently pursuing graduate studies in conflict transformation and reconciliation with the Irish School of Ecumenics (Trinity College Dublin) in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Top customer reviews
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Drawing on his personal journey working as a CPTer in Hebron, McRay invites readers to experience the tension and conflict taking place in the occupied West Bank. He shows us how important the works of international peacemakers in Hebron.
But the work of nonviolence resisting the Israeli brutal occupation against the Palestinians is filled with pains and frustrations. McRay observes honestly: "There is no formula for nonviolence. No "best approach" or "This is guaranteed to work" (p. 42). At best, nonviolence peacemaking is "guesswork" particularly in view of the fluidity of the occupied Palestine. In fact, the reality is that "change was not the point. The point was resistance. The point was to remind Israel that the Palestinian people are still here" (p. 59).
Anyone who has traveled in the occupied West Bank and has listened attentively to the agonizing stories of Palestinians no doubt can appreciate McRay's brutal honesty about the dire state of affairs in Palestine under Israeli cruel occupations: the separation wall that cuts through the Palestinian lands, destroying the very livelihood of the Palestinians; the daily military oppression and humiliation against the unarmed Palestinians; the Israeli settlers' constant harassment, protected by the IDF; the Israel lobby that dictates the US foreign policy; the oft-ignored bias permeated in the Western pro-Israel media and so on.
People in the West are often exposed to the Israeli side of the story. The Palestinian side of the conflict is rarely known. What sets this book apart from many other books written on this subject is McRay's very personal experience as CPT in Hebron. McRay's journey will definitely open one's eyes to see the evil of Israeli occupation in Palestine. The author's personal account should be a must-read to Christians, who are pro-Israel Zionists, whether consciously or subconsciously.
Yet this book is not simply an eye-opening experience in the occupied Palestine, McRay lays bare his spiritual journey in struggling how to practice the Christian faith in a violent world. By living with the Palestinians under occupation, McRay struggled painful the nonviolence "third way" preached and practiced by Jesus himself.
It seems that the harsh reality of Israeli military occupation will remain. But McRay still gives a ray of hope and calls Christians to build peace. Oscar Romero's quote is aptly quoted by McRay: "We are workers, not master builders, ministers, not messiahs. We are prophets of a future not our own." This book does not merely open one's world to the "other" side of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, it will challenge Christian readers to engage the oft-violent world with Jesus' third way.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who has the desire to understand the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Even one is not a Christian, one will definitely gain much insight into Jesus' distinctive approach to resist violence.