We got to spend our day in Bethlehem, which was such a treat. Joe, Mandie and I explored the markets and right away we got invited into one of the shops for tea. I love that people will just stop what they’re doing in order to visit with visitors.

In the evening, we stopped by Elias’ home (also a character in our film) and had a great time catching up with him over Arabic coffee and dinner.

Elias is an incredible photographer who loves to take pictures that depict the beauty in Palestine. One thing he said that really stood out to me was that everybody is a walking story. We tend to miss out on so much in all of the busyness of life, but if we take the time to stop and listen, so many intriguing stories can be discovered. In many ways, photography and film encourage you to look for stories all around you.

Being able to work on this film over the last year and a half has allowed us to meet so many people willing to share their stories that often include a lot of heartache, but also hope.  Getting to be a part of their lives over the last few months has taught us so much about loving others and living life well, even amidst an ongoing conflict.

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As-salamu alakum,

Anna

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