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Department of Religious Studies


Thanks to a grant received to fund activities for the Religious Studies Department, six students majoring in Religious Studies were accompanied by Dr. Charles Abu Sa'da on a five-day trip to Amman, Jordan in January 2002 to visit religious sites and meet with the students from the Jesuit Center, which, at the time, offered a two-year diploma in Religious Education as part of the Religious Studies Department at Bethlehem University.

The students, which included Lucy Talgieh (BU '03) and Mira Qumsiyyeh (BU '03), discussed together issues related to the Department and how to develop the Amman program at the Jesuit Center into a bachelor's degree. They also visited the church at Madaba, Mt. Nebo and other sites in Amman. "We were taking Fr. Louise Hazboun's Archaeology course and because we could not visit Israel, we decided to go to Jordan instead," Lucy said, adding that it was a nice trip but very short. Lucy's classmate Mira was very enthusiastic about the trip because it was her first time visiting the religious sites. "Usually when Palestinians go to Jordan they are there to see their families or to take trips outside the area, but to go there as tourists is quite a different experience," Mira said, adding, "It was incredible to see the Byzantine mosaics. We actually got to see a mosaic map of the entire region from Jordan to Palestine to Egypt, including an intricate image of the Old City of Jerusalem." Trips like these are integral to providing a more complete program, especially for those students who do not have access to religious sites inside Israel.

Bethlehem University Foundation
Phone: +1-240-241-4381
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Beltsville, MD USA
Bethlehem University in the Holy Land
Phone: +972-2-274-1241
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Bethlehem, Palestine