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For the Love of God: Care-giving in the Middle East

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In Jerusalem in the 1960s two nuns belonging to the Polish Order of the Sisters of St. Elizabeth experienced a calling to help relieve the suffering among children living around the walls of the old city. With the help of a loan and a 'miracle' Sister Raphaela and Sister Kryspina managed to finance the building of an orphanage 'The Home of Peace' on Mount of Olives in Jerusalem. Today 'The Home of Peace' is managed by fifteen nuns who do the washing, cleaning, feeding, tutoring and caring for approximately thirty children, mostly girls, under the age of eighteen years. This paper sketches aspects of long-term daily charitable giving, rescue, protection, shelter and gestures of kindness which are forgotten aspects in Middle Eastern research. This is an attempt to get at the often neglected story of compassion and care-giving in the Middle East. À Jérusalem, pendant les années 60, deux sœurs de l'ordre polonais des Sœurs de St. Elisabeth ont ressenti la vocation de soulager la souffrance des enfants vivant en dehors des murs de la Ville Sainte. Avec l'aide d'un emprunt et grâce à un « miracle », Sœur Raphaela et Sœur Kryspina ont pu financier la construction d'un orphelinat sur le Mont des Oliviers à Jérusalem, le'Foyer de la paix'. Aujourd'hui le 'Foyer de la paix' est dirigée par 15 sœurs qui nourrissent, lavent, instruisent et prennent soin d'une trentaine d'enfants, pour la plupart des filles de moins de 18 ans. L'article se penche sur des questions souvent laissées de côté dans la recherche sur le Moyen Orient de nos jours telles que le don charitable au quotidien sur la longue durée, le secours, la protection, l'abri et les gestes de gentillesse. Ceci est une tentative d'aborder l'histoire souvent oubliée de la compassion et du soin au Moyen Orient.


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