Tag Archives: Mary Mikhael

Witness – 4 June 2014

IMG_1043 (640x480)

Mary Mikhael, National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon
and
Catherine Gordon, Office of Public Witness, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
bore witness on Capitol Hill
to call for a peaceful approach to the crisis in Syria.

10 September 2013
Washington, D.C.

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Disciple – 2 June 2014

Mary Mikhael at Madison Avenue (800x533) (800x533)

Dr. Mary Mikhael
bears witness to the circumstances and ministry of the
National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanaon
in the spring of 2014.

9 February 2014
Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church
Manhattan, New York

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A call to act on Syria

Photos by Paul Jeffrey, ACT

Dr. Mary Mikhael of the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon reflects on the crisis in Syria.

Watch other videos.

Find ideas for action.

See you along the Trail.

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May insight into Syria lead to action

1236420_590326721006111_1853073050_nConcerned about the crisis in Syria? Want to learn more? Want to respond?

In a series of video clips, Dr. Mary Mikhael of the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon helps provide insight and understanding of the situation in Syria.

There are several ways to help the people of Syria. Here are some responses through the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

Additional resources from the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) related to Syria are also available. 

Since the outbreak of armed conflict in Syria, Dr. Mary Mikhael has been interpreting the consequences of this tragedy for the Syrian and Lebanese people, particularly the Christian communities, on behalf of the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon. From 1994­ to 2011, Dr. Mikhael was president of the Near East School of Theology (NEST), Beirut, Lebanon, the first woman seminary president in the Middle East. She served on the NEST faculty from 1984 until her retirement. She received her Masters degree from the Presbyterian School of Christian Education in Richmond, Virginia, and her EdD from Columbia University and Union Theological Seminary. A Presbyterian born in Syria to Greek Orthodox parents, Dr. Mikhael is active in ecumenical and interfaith initiatives. She is a noted authority on the church in the Middle East and the role of women in the church.

On September 10, 2013 the Office of Public Witness arranged a day of visits for Dr. Mikhael on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. On September 12 and 13, 2013 the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations arranged visits for her in the UN community. Public events for Dr. Mikhael to speak to Presbyterians were held in both Washington and New York.

The videos are excerpts from a conversation Mary and I had at the office of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations on September 11, 2013 with David Barnhart (who took the photo of the interview) and Scott Lansing doing the video work.

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See you along the Trail.

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Awareness

At times, we participate in profound moments unaware. Only in retrospect do we realize the significance of what we are a part.

Other times, we know – at least partly. We may not know all the details and nuances, but we recognize that matters of deep import surround us and we play our tiny part.

IMG_0247 (800x600)This past week, I had the privilege to accompany Dr. Mary Mikhael as she made an amazing witness for peace and justice in Syria. Mary is from the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon.  Until 2011, she served as the president of the Near East School of Theology in Beirut. After her retirement,the church has named her their interpreter and communicator in this time of tragedy and crisis for the people of Syria.

In that role, she traveled to the United States for the month of September. She spent last week in New York where I had the privilege to accompany her as she told the story of her church and her people, as she witnessed to her faith, as she advocated for peace and justice.

Mary went to Washington, DC on Tuesday. The Presbyterian Office of Public Witness arranged for her to speak at their Second Tuesday Briefing and to meet with aides of five elected officials and a State Department official.

Wednesday saw her in New York with the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. We did extensive video work with my friend and colleague David Barnhart and my new friend Scott Lansing. The video links will be shared when they are posted. That afternoon, Mary spoke to a public event attended by church members, UN agency staff members, and representatives of nongovernmental organizations.

On Thursday, Mary met with staff members of two Permanent Missions to the UN – missions that sit on the Security Council. She also met with representatives of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Syrian Crisis Core Group made up of UN agencies working in Syria.

As we rode uptown toward the place where Mary was staying, her relief was obvious. She had witnessed well and she was tired.

Then the phone of my colleague Ryan Smith buzzed. An offer arrived for Mary to meet with a representative of the  Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict on Friday.

“Would you do one more meeting?” Ryan asked.

No hesitation. Mary replied, “How can I say no?”

Ryan and I looked at each other. “You can say no because you are tired and this is one extra meeting and you had other plans.”

“How can I say no?” Mary repeated.

We conceded. “You can’t.”

“But can it be early in the day?” Mary asked.

Ryan confirmed the meeting and on Friday morning, it took place.

Mary and I then went uptown and for a moment said farewell. We will meet again, I am sure.

I give thanks for the time we shared.

And I gave thanks for Dr. Mary Mikhael.

And I gave thanks for her witness, her courage, her grace, and her faith as she told stories of horror and proclaimed hope.

And I give thanks for the small role I played in these profound moments.

See you along the Trail.

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