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St Catherine of Siena

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Sister Mary describes Rev Jesse Jackson's arrival in Holy Land

 Late this afternoon (Saturday) the Middle East Council of Churches welcomed Rev Jesse Jackson to this land so torn apart by violence. Rev Jackson, along with American Catholic and Protestant clergy, Muslim religious leaders and rabbis, held a press conference at Notre Dame Hospice in Jerusalem bringing a message of hope, a message of reconciliation, reconstruction and peace. Rev Jackson stated that he knows there are groups of both Palestinians and Israelis who have been active in the peace movement at the grass roots level. He urged them to make more bold and direct actions for peace. Rev Jackson's group has a full itinerary throughout the rest of this month, meeting with political leaders of Israelis and Palestinians, with peace activists, visiting with university faculties and students, visiting hospitals and refugee camps, travelling in the West Bank to Ramallah and Bethlehem, mingling with people and visiting the shrines and basilicas of the Christian community, then into the Gaza strip to see first hand the suffering of the people there. Throughout all this his message will continue to be one of hope as he and the religious leaders travelling with him work not on behalf of any government, but as independent religious leaders seeking to be bridge builders -- bridge builders for a mutual recognition of our humanity and the humanity of the "other". "Hope", as he says, "is a great weapon against fear and despair". Sr Mary is an Ursuline nun working in the Holy Land