Israel Seminar Programs
Program Models - Customized to the Interests and Concerns of Each Group

Designed for a group of Christian and Jewish clergy, this program was designed to challenge participants to experience the people, places, and politics of the Holy Land through each other's eyes. Many participants had been to Israel on previous trips, but everyone returned home with new perspectives on the Israel/Palestine and with deeper connections to their local clergy neighbors.

Day 1

Arrive in Israel, bus to Jerusalem

Day 2

  • Introduction to the program and to Havruta text study
  • Study session: “Jerusalem: National and Spiritual Center”
  • Study tour: “Heavenly and Earthly Jerusalem” - Jaffa Gate, rooftop view of four quarters, Broad Wall, Cardo, Western Wall, Via Dolorosa, Austrian Hospice view of Al Aqsa Mosque and Dome of the Rock, Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Church of the Redeemer, Greek Orthodox Patriarchate
  • Opening dinner at Eucalyptus Restaurant

Day 3

  • Morning devotion
  • Study session: “State of Israel: Jewish and Democratic”
  • Study tour: “Jerusalem Old to New” - Mishkenot Shaananim, Knesset, Supreme Court, Israel Museum
  • Lunch
  • Study session: “Christian and Muslim Arab Israelies”
  • Free afternoon
  • Dinner
  • Panel discussion – local Christian and Jewish leaders “Jerusalem: Real and Ideal”

Day 4

  • Morning devotion
  • Introduction and Havruta study
  • Study session: “Religious Zionists and Ultra-Orthodox Jews”
  • Lunch
  • Study Session: “Jewish Secular Identity”
  • Study tour: “Bridging the Divide” – community organizations focusing on conflicts between religious and secular cultures, ideals, and conflicts.
  • Reflections
  • Dinner in Machane Yehudah market 

Day 5

  • Morning devotion
  • Study session – “Mizrahim (Arab Jews)”
  • Discussion: Challenges of race in Israeli and American societies
  • Lunch / free time
  • Kabbalat Shabbatservice – local synagogue
  • Shabbat dinner – home hospitality

Day 6

  • Free morning / synagogue services
  • Lunch
  • Study session: “Religion and State”
  • Walking tour: “Conflict or Harmony? The Multireligious weave of Jerusalem” 
  • Havdalah
  • Dinner 

Day 7

  • Church services
  • Box lunch, drive to Galilee
  • Meet with Arab Palestinian Israelis in Baqa-al-Gharbiya
  • Dinner in “Nura’s home” – a Druze kitchen in Daliyat el-Karmel
  • Check in to Galilee hotel

Day 8

  • Morning devotion and reflections on the beach of the Sea of Galilee / Kinneret
  • Capernaum
  • Mount of Beatitudes
  • Magdala / Migdal
  • Lunch
  • Yardenit (baptismal site on the Jordan River)
  • Kinneret Cemetery (burial site of poet Rachel Blustein)
  • Drive back to Jerusalem
  • Dinner at Jerusalem hotel

Day 9

  • Morning devotion
  • Introduction and Havrutahstudy
  • Study session: “1967: Power, Land and God”
  • Lunch
  • Tour of Yad Vashem
  • Free time
  • Dinner
  • Study session: “The Shoahin Poetry” 

Day 10

  • Study Tour: The West Bank: Bethlehem and Gush Etzion
  • Lunch
  • Study Session: “Responses to War and Occupation”
  • Dinner

Day 11

  • Morning devotion
  • Introduction and Havruta study
  • Study session: “Narratives of Peace”
  • Lunch
  • Visit Yad B’YadJewish-Arab bilingual school
  • Concluding discussion: “Living with Competing Values”
  • Reflections
  • Closing dinner