Music and conversation about peace

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Concert

Red Door series

An evening of music and conversations about peace in the Middle East among Israeli, Palestinian, and American teens on Tuesday, at 6 p.m. at St. Mary's in the Mountains, 13 E. Main St., Wilmington. Free-will donation

The Red Doors Open For An

Evening of Music and Conversation About

Peace in the Middle East

On Tuesday, July 24, at 6 p.m., the Red Door Concert series at St. Mary's in the Mountains, Wilmington, Vermont, will offer a unusual and unique opportunity to learn about peace-building among Israeli, Palestinian and American teens, while listening to a variety of music appropriate for the occasion. In cooperation with Jerusalem Peacebuilders (JPB), our doors and eyes will be opened while participants in the Leadership Institute discuss their lives, and how their experience this summer affects how they view their neighbors. Music, poetry, and photographs will be part of our event.

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Jerusalem Peacebuilders (www.jerusalempeacebuilders.org) is an interfaith, non-profit organization with a mission to create a better future for humanity across religions, cultures, and nationalities. Integral to its work is the belief that the future of Jerusalem is the future of the world. JPB promotes transformational, person-to-person encounters among the peoples of Jerusalem, the Middle East, and the United States. Founders, the Rev. Nicholas and Dorothy Porter, believed that the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks brought new urgency to the timeless call for peace in the Holy Land. To that end, they began specialized youth leadership programs — first in Brattleboro, and now in the Middle East as well as in New Haven, Connecticut, and Houston, Texas — for Israeli, Palestinian and American teens. JPB programming unites these young adults, providing them with the opportunities, relationships, and skills they need to become future leaders for peace in the global community. A passion for peace drives JPB's mission and partnerships power its program.

St. Mary's Red Door concerts have become a mainstay in Wilmington. These musical events are offered four times each year. Past concerts have ranged from classical and jazz concerts, to the annual Red Door Community Carol Sing, to a musical potpourri, and even a celebration of Vermont's Fifth (Mud) Season. Each concert highlights and benefits a local charity.

The members of Wilmington's St. Mary's approached Jerusalem Peacebuilders with the idea of offering an opportunity for the Southern Vermont community to get to know more about JPB program, and to hear from and meet, first hand, teens from Jerusalem and the Holy Lands. "Our campers come from the many cultural traditions of the Middle East," said the Rev. Nicholas Porter of JPB. "Because of that, they can share not only what our program is about, but even more, their personal perspectives about Jerusalem and the complicated challenges that they, and we, strive to solve." "St. Mary's has been supporting Jerusalem Peacebuilders for several years, and we hope our friends and neighbors will enjoy and learn by meeting and hearing from teens from Jerusalem," said Joe Fortner, a church member involved in planning its Red Door events.

The evening will include conversations and discussions by JPB Leadership Institute participants. Interspersed throughout will be musical offerings, some by the JPB campers, and others by members of St. Mary's in the Mountains, including Rich Mattern, Kathleen Loomis-Ward, and Holly & Joe Fortner. At the conclusion, the JPB Teens will join in singing several tunes. After the event, all attendees are invited to our reception, where everyone can meet and chat with our friends from Jerusalem.

The event will be at 13 E. Main Street in Wilmington, VT. Admission is by free-will donation, with all proceeds donated to Jerusalem Peacebuilders and its programs.

More information about Jerusalem Peacebuilders can be found at www.jerusalempeacebuilders.org. In addition, Rev. Porter is available for further information and interviews regarding this event and about Jerusalem Peacebuilders, and can be reached at nporter@jerusalempeacebuilders.org. More information about St. Mary's Red Door Concerts and this event can be found at www.smmvt.org/red-door-concerts. Joe Fortner is available for further information regarding this event and St. Mary's Red Door Concerts, and can be reached at fortner1@comcast.net.