Today is the first day of Christian festival Greenbelt, which similar to Limmud for Jews, provides an opportunity for Christians to come together, share ideas and debate issues. Taking place over four days in Gloucestershire, there was one speaker on the bill in particular that caught our attention.
There is still a huge challenge in delivering musical education to children in the Palestinian Territories. Limitations on financial resources mean that teachers' salaries are low, instruments are often of poor quality, and teaching resources can be basic - and it's also difficult for foreign teachers to get visas to work there.
July 2013 is most likely to go down in history as the month the heir to the throne was born (it can't be that much longer, can it?), but this week delivered plenty of other reasons to pop the champagne corks. Whether it was England's cricketers keeping the Aussies in check at Lords, the glorious weather continuing to toast the country from top to toe, or the historical moment when gay marriage finally became legal, cracking a smile hasn't been difficult these past seven days.
Today is important. Not only because there are flagrant human rights abuses, but also because those of us that wander have lost and will continue to lose. Those of us that are first generation might have experienced visits or the scattered memories of our parents, but that loss, that inability to return, is one that will continue to be passed through generations.
It may seem strange that Israelis seem far more concerned about the resignation of Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad than the Palestinians. Israelis, along with the US and European states, value Fayyad - a former IMF economist who has been focused on building a Palestinian state from the ground up and has shown little interest in posturing at the UN.
Just before Easter I wrote a blog on the causes of anti-Semitism as an adjunct to a piece done earlier by Mehdi Hasan. It wasn't particularly controversial. Yet, from most of the comments received one can visualize how some racism spreads through a lack of current events knowledge, revisionist history and just plain bigotry.