富易堂体育新闻

Global Learning and Service: Israel

Denis Reyes | October 9, 2023

Criswell students have the unique experience of participating in a Global Learning and Service project in Israel during their sophomore year as part of the 富易堂体育360°, our common student experience. They experience firsthand the significance of both Scripture and diverse contemporary cultural perspectives. Beyond being a mere sightseeing journey, traveling to Israel offers a transformative cross-cultural educational experience. While there is significance in walking where Jesus walked and viewing the land as the “fifth gospel” (per Saint Jerome), traveling to Israel empowers students to gain insights into the lives, 文化, and worldviews of individuals whose everyday realities differ from the norm in the United States.

“今年夏天, our trip included typical visits to biblical sites like Jerusalem, 耶利哥, 伯利恒, 死海, 拿撒勒, 加利利海, 戈兰高地, 和其他地方. This is an important aspect of deepening our students’ understanding of Scripture and their role as disciples in God’s story. What is not typical during a Holy Land tour, but is emphasized at Criswell College, is spending time with the ‘living stones of the land’ (i.e., the diverse peoples who reside in the land), not just the ‘dead’ stones (i.e., the archaeological sites),” said Dr. J. Scott Bridger, Professor of Global Studies & World Religions and Director of Global Learning and Service. 在这方面, we were blessed to meet and worship with local believers at an Arabic-speaking Baptist church in 拿撒勒 and a Hebrew-speaking Messianic congregation in Jerusalem. We also heard from numerous voices about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, 包括以色列阿拉伯人, 巴勒斯坦阿拉伯人, 和以色列犹太人, both believers and non-believers. But the high point of our trip by far was conducting summer camps around the theme ‘Living from the Inside Out’ among Israeli Arab Muslim teen年龄rs. Everyone came away with a deeper understanding of the importance of knowing our neighbors as a foundation to loving our neighbors.”

It is this “deeper understanding” that Criswell students Abby Lacalle and Jenna Coombs were able to experience. Jenna shared her thoughts, 说, “Experiencing Arab Muslim culture and then visiting the Western Wall in Jerusalem during Shabbat was true culture shock. Witnessing Jews from diverse backgrounds gathering at this historic site was truly amazing.”

During their visit to the Messianic congregation, Criswell students had the chance to partake in worship outside of the United States and came to a clearer understanding that the Lord’s work extends across the globe. Abby expressed her gratitude for this transformative experience, 声明, “I can’t express how thankful I am that my worldview changed. It was integral to my education.”

Jenna and Abby found the most profound aspect of the trip to be their interactions with local high school students. The relationships they formed in such a short time were truly transformative. When they visited one of the vill年龄s, they were cautioned that some of the kids might harbor resentment toward Americans due to the ongoing political turmoil. They had expected indifference from the teen年龄rs but were pleasantly surprised to become attached to them by the end of the first day. Abby reflected, “I told the girls that I would learn Arabic and be back to visit them. No one expected the impact of these relationships.”

The primary significance of the visit to Israel lay in immersing students in its vibrant 文化, forging meaningful connections with its people, and having them gain a profound realization that Jesus’ work transcends geographical boundaries.

NOTICE OF NON-DISCRIMINATION
Criswell College admits students who are Christians of good character, without regard or reference to race, 国家或民族出身, color, 年龄, 残疾, or sex (except where regard to sex is required by the College’s religious tenets regarding gender and sexuality) to all the rights, 特权, 项目, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of these classifications in administration of its educational policies, 国际富易堂体育政策, scholarship and loan 项目, and other school-administered 项目.