On any given day, a Google search for the word “Israel” or “Palestine” will invariably lead to headlines about war, terrorism or military strikes, painting a grim picture of a hostile territorial fight that Americans usually only see through the lens of news camera.
There is another Middle East, though, one that includes everyday people trying to live everyday lives, whether they are Jewish, Christian or Muslim. They go to jobs, raise families, throw parties, make meals, and visit their temple, church or mosque. They are as ordinary as we are, except that they call home to one side or another constantly in conflict.
Bombarded by video footage and images of death and destruction, it is easy to be dissuaded to never set foot in such a place, the fear for one’s life overriding any cultural, personal or spiritual calling to visit.
Active in the Chelsea community, and at St. Mary Parish, Wendy Rutter has long been doing good work in Michigan and throughout the United States, but the nurse anesthetist found herself immersed in a mission that ultimately would require a trip to Israel. A trip she was reluctant to make.
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