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Reform Magazine | December 1, 2023

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A letter from… Bethlehem

A letter from… Bethlehem

Nader Abu Amsha reports from Bethlehem

In the north of this globe, markets start warming up for Christmas. The candles, ornaments and music are out, and soon we will start hearing the world hymning “O Little Town of Bethlehem”. But do you know what Christmas looks like for Christian Palestinians in Bethlehem? Their story deserves to be heard – the alternative story, of the broken town of Bethlehem.

Two thousand years ago, Palestinian shepherds heard the voice of angels telling them the good news of great joy. They sung – and still sing – “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among men with whom he is pleased”. The people have striven for peace since the angels told them: “Don’t be afraid.” They are trying to find their way, in the midst of the suffering and pain, the blood and the smoke of guns and tear gas….

Nader Abu Amsha is director of the East Jerusalem YMCA’s rehabilitation programme, a partner of Embrace the Middle East. To make a donation in support its work, visit or call 01494 897950


This is an extract from the December 2015/January 2016 edition of Reform.

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