Is a village in Israel, in the Western Galilee, dedicated to encounter and dialogue, learning and hospitality. The name, meaning ‘sign to the nations’, is taken from the text of Isaiah 11:10, and was chosen by the pioneers to express their ideals, which are still today the ideals of the community.
An international, ecumenical Christian community lives in the village, and in the near future, a shared community will be established where Jews and Arabs will live together on its grounds.
The members (volunteers) of the community are motivated by the lessons of the past of the Shoah in Europe, in trying to turn a new page in the relations between Jews and Christians, and motivated by the challenges of the present, in learning about the reality, dreams and traumas of the land and all its inhabitants. The members strive to be a community of people who live and work together – mainly on a voluntary basis – alongside other Israeli inhabitants and employees (Jews and Arabs) of the village. With this experience and knowledge, the volunteers become ambassadors of the Nes Ammim ideals in their home country.
learning and dialogue
Learning and dialogue are the key words of the ideological work of Nes Ammim. Learning is first and foremost: learning as Christians from the Jewish tradition which is also our tradition. Dialogue can be interpret as ‘learning from yourself by interacting with the other’. It’s badly needed, since Israel is divided into two major groups: Jews and Arabs. A lot of them hardly have any contact. The way how the society is organized, the fear or lack of interest prevent them to talk with each other. The reservations held by each group against the other influence the everyday life in Israel. Dialogue work is urgently needed. Yet the organisations which work on it are small and they are only a few in number. Nes Ammim performs pioneering work in the North of Israel, in the Galilee. Our dialogue work capitalises on the trust that Nes Ammim has built over the years as a place of respect for the different religious and cultural commitments of guests and inhabitants. While Israel is divided into Arab and Jewish towns, villages and areas, Nes Ammim is a neutral place. The dialogue groups coming to Nes Ammim esteem this. Nes Ammim enjoys their respect and confidence. Nes Ammim also seeks to strengthen ties with Christian communities.
he symbol of the ear of wheat, represents the Jewish kibbutzim in Israel which were living almost solely from farming when the pioneers built Nes Ammim. While the ear of wheat stands on the ground, the fish only crosses it. The IChThYS fish is the ancient symbol of the Christians. The ear of wheat and the fish overlap: Israelis and volunteers meet in Nes Ammim.