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International Peacemaker from Palestine visits U.S. in fall

Alex Awad will speak to churches about life in the Holy Land

by Scott O’Neill | Presbyterian News Service

Alex Awad. (Photo provided)

LOUISVILLE — The Rev. Alex E. Awad, a peace and justice advocate and former missionary with the United Methodist Church, will speak to U.S. audiences this fall as part of the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program’s International Peacemakers initiative. He’s served in Israel/Palestine as an educator and pastor for more than 30 years and will speak about his experiences in the Holy Land, the conditions faced by Palestinians under occupation, the impact of Israeli settlements, and the role of the church in ending the current injustices found in his homeland.

Awad is currently the co-chair of the education committee of United Methodists for Kairos Response and is very clear about the biggest challenge facing his native land.

“The country of my origin has been under brutal occupation for over half a century,” he said. “Men, women and children are killed daily, and oppression is the rule of law by the Israeli occupiers of Palestinian lands. I join others in protesting and advocating for an end to the occupation and the blockade of Gaza to help gain the humanitarian rights of the Palestinian people.”

Awad has authored numerous books and articles for various publications that call for justice for both Palestinians and Israelis. Two books, Through the Eyes of Victims and Palestinian Memories, reveal the realities of life under Israeli military occupation. After years of lecturing and educating visitors on the Holy Land through seminars and study programs, Awad decided he needed to make a stronger impact in a larger forum. So, he presented the idea of a weeklong conference in Bethlehem to his then-employer, Bethlehem Bible College.

“The idea was to bring participants and renowned speakers from around the world to listen, learn and experience first-hand what it was like living under occupation, facing checkpoints, walls, and daily discrimination and humiliation,” said Awad. “The first conference launched in 2010 and has continued every two years, including the most recent one that concluded in June 2018. I believe these conferences are making a difference in helping people become advocates of peace, justice and truth for all of God’s children living in the Holy Land, whether they are Christians, Muslims, Jews or Palestinians, Christians or expatriates.”

Awad is one of 10 International Peacemakers visiting the U.S. as part of the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program. They will speak at churches, seminaries and other gatherings from Sept. 21 through Oct. 15. Participating in the Peacemakers program will provide Awad an opportunity to share with U.S. audiences what conditions are like for Palestinians living in Israel and the Palestinian territories and how Christians should respond.

“I have a passion for educating grassroots Americans about the Israel/Palestine issue and helping the church gain a Biblical alternative to Christian Zionism,” said Awad. “My ultimate desire is to see an end of the Arab-Israeli conflict and the humanity and human rights of all citizens of the land called ‘Holy’ restored.”


To learn more about the International Peacemakers program, contact the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program at 800-728-7228, ext. 5200, or email

Since 1984, more than 300 International Peacemakers from more than 50 countries have been hosted by Presbyterian organizations. The International Peacemaking Program is made possible by gifts to the Peace and Global Witness Offering.

Awad’s travel and presbytery schedule include:
Mid-Kentucky Presbytery          Sept. 14–18
Presbytery of West Virginia       Sept. 21–28
Denver Presbytery                        Sept. 28–Oct. 6
Presbytery of New York City      Oct. 6–10
West Jersey Presbytery               Oct. 10–15

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