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City of Christian Love

The History and Importance of Nazareth


Raouf Abujaber

City of Christian Love provides a detailed history of Nazareth from the dawn of the Christian Era until today with special focus on the religious communities found in this sacred city, including both the periods of tension and the periods of profound interreligious partnership and solidarity.

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Preface: Reflections from a Childhood in Transjordan


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Reflections from a Childhood in Transjordan

For the last two thousand years, Nazareth, the city of Jesus Christ, has been a center of attraction to all the Christians across the world. True to this noble legacy, the town witnessed over the centuries fateful changes of destiny but remained always resilient and a noble abode for those who chose to live in it. It has continuously maintained itself as a Christian locality although, at certain times in its history, it barely had any Christians in its environs. A spirit of Christian love has been the dominant element in its existence thus justly deserving the title given to her as “The City of Christian Love.”

My relationship with this center of civilization goes back many years. In 1921, my father, a young son of an established family in Es-Salt, the main population center of the Balqa district in Transjordan, went with a group of relatives to Nazareth, to ask for the hand of Basimah, the daughter of another established family, the Kawars. Her uncle Boulous (Paul) the head of the clan, had ten sons amongst whom at least six were eligible for marriage to the cousin following the customs of the day. But Boulous was liberal-minded, generous and farsighted. He overruled the tradition and convinced his younger brother, the father of the bride Jurji (George), to agree to the marriage. My mother ← xv | xvi → thereafter came to Es-Salt and spent her life...

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