2014 Programs and Events


  • Pre-pilgrimage Information Session from a Palestinian Perspective. Presentation by CPWJ board member Burhan Ghanayem and supporter Ayman Alqudwah to church members preparing to depart for Israel/Palestine. White Memorial Presbyterian Church, Raleigh.


  • A Conversation with Laila Haddad. Haddad, author of Gaza Kitchen, presented a perspective rarely offered in the media about how conflict and siege play out in the daily lives of ordinary Palestinians in Gaza, and how people–particularly women–manage to create little spaces of vitality and joy in the midst of it all. FedEx Global Education Center, UNC- Chapel Hill.
  • Shattered Hopes: Obama’s Failure to Broker Israeli-Palestinian Peace. Josh Ruebner, National Advisory Director of the U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation, and author of Shattered Hopes, made presentations at Meredith College, Raleigh, Fed Ex Global Education Center-UNC and Church of Reconciliation, Chapel Hill.


  • Al Rowwad Cultural and Theatre Training Center in Bethlehem, Palestine was represented by Dr. Abdelfattah Abusrour, director of Al Rowwad. CPWJ co-sponsored the NC visit of Dr. Abusrour who directed the “Diary of Anne Frank” at Burning Coal Theater, Raleigh and made presentations to classes at Shaw University, North Carolina State University, and Guilford College and spoke at a fundraising event arranged by CPWJ.
  • “Compartments: How the Brightest, Best Trained, and Most Caring People Can Make Judgments that Are Completely and Utterly Wrong.” Dr. Steve Feldman, CPWJ board member, spoke at the Community Church of Chapel Hill on insights from his new book.
  • The Stones Cry Out: the Story of the Palestinian Christians” A film screening and discussion presented at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, Raleigh by Peggy Rafferty, CPWJ board Chair, and Jim and Cindy Rice, board members.


  • Report from Israel and Palestine. MaryLou Smith, CPWJ founder, and Dee Froeber, managing director, reported on insights from their June trip to Israel and Palestine and their visit with CPWJ’s partners in the region. Hosted by Balance and Accuracy in Journalism, Unitarian Church, Chapel Hill.
  • Vigil for Gaza. CPWJ, the Abrahamic Initiative on the Middle East (AIME), Jewish Voice for Peace NC (JVPNC) held a public action at the CCB Plaza, Durham, to mourn the ongoing humanitarian nightmare in Gaza and called for an end to the 3.5 billion U.S. taxpayer dollars that support Israel’s ongoing occupation of Gaza and the West Bank.


  • The Gaza Crisis. Presentations by Dr. Rania Masri, Arab-American writer, human rights activist, and assistant professor at the University of Balamand in Lebanon and CPWJ leadership Mary Lou Lieser Smith, Dr. Ralph McCoy, and Dee Froeber. Pullen Memorial Baptist Church, Raleigh.


  • Bright Stars of Bethlehem. Rev. Dr. Mitri Raheb, pastor of the Nativity Church, Bethlehem, visited Chapel Hill for the North Carolina kick-off of the his U.S. tour Room for Hope, with more than 100 members of the local community attended a luncheon and cooking demonstration prepared by Palestinian chefs and Raheb’s presentation on the topic of Palestinian Christians living under the Occupation. Co-sponsored by the United Church of Chapel Hill.


  • The MAIA Project. Dr. Ralph McCoy and Emily McCoy made a presentation at Hillsborough Presbyterian Church and numerous other locations throughout the Triangle to raise funds for the purchase of desalination units to supply safe drinking water to children attending UNRWA schools in Gaza.
  • Stories of Liberation: Voices from Jews, Palestinians, African Americans, Hispanics. Presentation by panelists. Co-sponsored with the Abrahamic Initiative on the Middle East and other local organizations. Nelson Mandela Auditorium, UNC-CH.


  • The Soldier and The Refusenik. Eran Efrati, a former Israeli Defense Force soldier, and Maya Wind, a conscientious objector, shared their experiences growing up in Jerusalem and their efforts to encourage Israelis to embrace a joint Israeli-Palestinian struggle for justice and equality. Hosted by the Raleigh Friends Meeting, Raleigh.
  • Building Peace in Israel-Palestine. It Matters What You Think. Presentation at NCSU Peace and Justice Forum. Rev. Mark Davidson, CPWJ board member and senior pastor, Church of Reconciliation, Chapel Hill, NC. Co-sponsored by the Presbyterian Campus Ministry, West Raleigh Presbyterian Church, Raleigh.