I will be leaving early in the morning for the Voices of OrthodoxWomen’s board meeting. But I want to recommend an exceptionally well written and researched piece by David Fischler on last Sunday night’s Sixty Minutes’ program “Christians of the Holy Land.” Fischler’s posting is, “Putting the Hatchet to Israel” and it is at Standing Firm. He begins:“On Sunday evening, the CBS newsmagazine 60 Minutes ran a story entitled “Christians of the Holy Land.” It purports to be an objective report on the condition of the Christian community in Israel and the Palestinian territories. It is not.
There’s a video of the segment you can watch here, or a transcript you can read here. I’d like to take a look at some of it, and show where the reporter, Bob Simon, went wrong (sometimes humorously so.) We’ll start with a funny:
Here in Jerusalem, the numbers are even bleaker than in Bethlehem.
Theophilos the third, the patriarch of the Greek Orthodox, has lived through the decline. His church, the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, is the most sacred site in Christendom. He took us up to the roof. You’ve got to know a patriarch to get here.
Actually, you don’t. Pretty much any tourist on the right tour can do so. I’ve been on the roof of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and I don’t know a single patriarch.
Mitri Raheb: Christianity started here. The only thing that Palestine was able to export so successfully was Christianity.
Mitri Raheb is a Palestinian, a Christian and a Lutheran minister from Bethlehem. He runs schools, cultural centers and health clinics.
Though you would never know it from Simon’s report, Mitri Raheb is an interesting character. He is a leading exponent of “replacement theology,” or supersessionism, and claims that Christians “have inherited all of the God’s promises, including the Land of Israel.”
Fischler writes and shows how the security wall does not surround Bethlehem. He quotes a Muslim reporter about the harassment of Palestinian Christians by extreme Muslims. And he gives an analysis of the Kairos Document and how it was misrepresented in the CBS program.
All of this is excellent please read.