Palestinian Farmer Daoud Nassar speaks: Hope Still Rises

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Daoud Nassar (photo: Gied ten Berge, CC BY 3.0 , via Wikimedia Commons)
Palestinian Christian Daoud Nassar spoke to the Kairos Puget Sound Coalition meeting in Dec 2020 and described the struggle for justice in Israel-Palestine.

By Kairos Puget Sound Coalition |  February 6, 2021

The struggle for justice will continue with faith, love and hope.

In December 2020 the Kairos Puget Sound Coalition held a zoom presentation featuring Daoud Nassar, a Palestinian Christian farmer who is Director of the Tent of Nations Project (TON) in Palestine.   TON is an educational and environmentally conscious farm that seeks to build bridges among people, and between people and the land. Daoud’s family has legally owned the farm since 1916, when Palestine was under Ottoman rule. The one-hundred-acre farm, located 6 kilometers from Bethlehem, is surrounded on three sides by Israeli settlements, and below by the Palestinian village of Nahalin. The family has been in Israeli courts since 1991, seeking formal recognition of their legal claim to this land.

Note: Daoud starts speaking after the text about the event.

Daoud has traveled to the United States twice each year, since 2007, and spoken at nearly 350 venues in the U.S., under the sponsorship of Friends of Tent of Nations North America (FOTONNA.org). Daoud shares the story of his family’s commitment to living a life of non-violent resistance. At the entrance to Daoud’s farm, one is met with a large sign painted on a huge rock, stating “We Refuse to be Enemies”. The continuous – and numerous – obstacles they face in their daily life, mirror the experience of most Palestinians living under Israeli occupation.

In June 2013, Daoud was invited to preach at the well-known Riverside Baptist Church in New York City, which is where other more famous human rights leaders such as Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela, and Bishop Tutu, have also preached. In July 2018, Daoud was invited to the Carter Center in Atlanta to be a participant in the Human Rights Defenders Forum. In October 2018, Tent of Nations and the Nassar Family received a Peace Award from the World Methodist Council. That same year Daoud was among 15 individuals to receive the Franco-German Prize for Human Rights and the Rule of Law.

Daoud has a bachelor’s degree in Biblical Studies from the Bethlehem Bible College, a bachelor’s degree in Business from Bethlehem University, and a degree in Tourism Management from Bielefeld University in Germany. He is married to Jihan Nassar, and they have three children. Daoud speaks and understands Arabic, Hebrew, German and English.