Features

Mystical union: Jewish-Sufis in the Holy Land

Mystical union: Jewish-Sufis in the Holy Land

Jews and Muslims worship right next to each other in the Holy Land, yet they are separated by walls, barriers and hostility. Some Jews, however, are trying to break that pattern. They have found a path in Sufism, the mystical dimension of Islam.


Pasta for Shabbat: Israel’s Italian Jewish community

Pasta for Shabbat: Israel's Italian Jewish community

The synagogue at 27 Hillel Street, in the heart of Jerusalem, is no ordinary synagogue. It is the fulcrum of Israel’s unique Italian Jewish community. The Italian-Jewish identity is a complicated one: sometimes painful and contradictory, and always with a special Italian flair. But recently, the Italian synagogue was given an ultimatum, one that could threaten this vibrant community.


Palestinian first, queer second

When it comes to gay rights, some see Israel as a beacon of tolerance in the Middle East.


Torn between two worlds and an uncertain future

Torn between two worlds and an uncertain future

Armenians have lived in Jerusalem for more than a millennium but war and emigration have taken a toll on this ancient Christian community.


The psychology of an East Jerusalem protest

The psychology of an East Jerusalem protest

Protests in Sheikh Jarrah in East Jerusalem have taken place every Friday for nearly two years. Why do people keep coming back?


The downside of social media

The downside of social media

The March 15 Palestinian youth quickly learned to use Facebook and Twitter to organize their movement. They are now learning to tackle the “evils” of social media.


A long road home: One woman’s journey through Israel’s conversion laws

A long road home: One woman's journey through Israel's conversion laws

Conversion is a hot-button issue in Israel – a constant on the national agenda. And increasingly strict standards for recognizing conversions have upsetting consequences for many.


Mormons in Israel feel close to religious roots

Mormons in Israel feel close to religious roots

Jerusalem has a special pull on Mormons, and although Mormons living in Israel may not be actively proselytizing, they do feel close to their religious roots by being in the Holy Land.


Nonviolent resistance in the Holy Land

Nonviolent resistance in the Holy Land

In a region riddled with violence and an urge to settle the score as opposed to forgive and make peace, there are still many people and groups who advocate for nonviolence.


Christians fight to keep faith alive in Holy Land

Christians fight to keep faith alive in Holy Land

In many ways, the saga of the Awad family of Jerusalem reflects the diminishing fortunes of Christians in the Holy Land.


‘Never before’ versus ‘never again’

'Never before' versus 'never again'

Each year on April 24, Armenians living in Israel gather to commemorate the 1915 mass killings of an estimated 1.5 million Armenians. But can the slogan “Never Again” be fully realized without recognizing the first genocide of the 20th century?


The secular and religious sides of Purim in Israel

The secular and religious sides of Purim in Israel

The Jewish holiday of Purim is celebrated by both secular and religious Jews. But whether it’s reading the Book of Esther or parading in the streets, for all it means fun and dressing up.


Abortion issue heats up in the Holy Land

Abortion issue heats up in the Holy Land

When Mali Aharon became pregnant in 2005, she stood, figuratively speaking, at the same way station her parents had, paralyzed by fear. She was broke, alone and didn’t know what to do. But as an Israeli, she had options.


Amid conflict, churches place faith in divestment

Amid conflict, churches place faith in divestment

Some say that church organizations that invest their holdings in companies that do business with Israel are contributing to what they see as the degradation of the Palestinian people.


The flight of the faithful: Local Christians leaving the Holy Land

The flight of the faithful: Local Christians leaving the Holy Land

Every Easter season, Christian pilgrims flock to the Holy Land to reconnect to their religious roots. In 2010, more than two million visited the region, and even more are projected this year. But while tourism in the Holy Land is on the rise, the number of local Christians is on the decline. Dennis Murphy reports.


Dual identities: Indian Jews in Israel

Dual identities: Indian Jews in Israel

After 2,000 years, Jews of Indian origin have come full circle. Just as they struggled to keep their Jewish culture alive in India, they are now struggling to keep their Indian culture alive in Israel. Raksha Kumar documents the dual identities of Indian Jews in Israel.