Interview with Bishop Riah Abu El-Assal

Interview of the Rt Rev'd Bishop Riah Abu El Assal, former Anglican Bishop of Jerusalem, of Passion Week in the Holy Land, Peace and Covid19

On April 8th an online interview of the Rt Rev'd Bishop Riah Abu El Assal, was attended by 110 people by Zoom. See the video here

Riah Abu El-Assal – refugee, father, husband, politician, deacon, priest, archdeacon, canon, ecumenist, inter-faith activist and 13th Anglican Bishop of the Diocese of Jerusalem and the Middle East. Former Bishop of Jerusalem, he is currently an ITNJ Judicial Commissioner leading its Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

Bishop Riah has been a longstanding friend of Universal Peace Federation, Women's Federation for World Peace and British Clergy Leadership Conference. He addressed Middle East Peace Initiative audiences in Jerusalem, London, Birmingham and Seoul.

Bishop Riah served in different capacities: an active member of the WCC Commission on Human Rights; Co-Chair of the World council For Religious Leaders; Co- Founder of the Nazareth Democratic Front, Secretary General of the Progressive Movement; third candidate for the 1984 and 1988 Kenneset; Chairman of Dr. Anis Fund; Chairman of Al-Sawt (Voice) Publishing House; visiting Lecturer at St. George’s College, Jerusalem; Founder of Bishop Riah Educational Campus in Nazareth; and a member of the Board of Trustees of the Academic Arab College For Education in Israel – Haifa.

Bishop Riah brought to the episcopate a ministry that has been nurtured by his hometown, Nazareth, where he served as rector of Christ Church with distinction for twenty-seven years. At the very basis of his ministry is his calling to justice and peace for all people and the setting at liberty of the oppressed as those themes are reflected in Jesus’ sermon in the synagogue in Nazareth. Throughout his ministry he held Jesus’ sermon as his vision, but he paid a price for his faith and his convictions. He loves to tell visitors that in his own land he became a minority four times, being an Arab, Palestinian, Christian, and Anglican living in Israel. But as a minority in his own home he became more sensitive to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He always spoke with courage and honesty, though as with Prophet Jeremiah, there are people who have not liked to hear the truth which his lips have spoken.

  • He is the author of Caught In Between, a book translated into a number of languages, and he contributed to a number of books among them: Walking the Red Line; How Long O Lord; Faith and The Intifada; Judaism or Zionism; and, Christians in the Holy Land.

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