HOPKINS COUNTY, Ky. (3/19/13) – Last Wednesday, the Lions Club in Madisonville held a Luncheon for retired Circuit Judge Charles Boteler to discuss his most recent trip to the Middle-East.
Over the last four years Judge Boteler has made three trips to the Middle-East. His most recent trip was last summer where he was able to spend 5 weeks in Bethlehem to visit and talk about the Peace Process. He spent a lot of his time volunteering with the Holy Land Trust, which is an organization that values and believes in peace. The Holy Land Trust has developed three principles that are believed to be the core to end violence and bring true peace not only in their communities but globally as well. They are as follows: Nonviolence, Leadership and Healing &Transformation.
Nonviolence is what HLT strives for. They have projects, trainings and activities for both adults and children to develop strategies and actions on how to address all forms of violence and oppression. Leadership is something a little harder to achieve. However, focusing and creating breakthrough results by being able to envision a better and bold future can teach participants to step out of their perceived limitations and engage in progressed results in personal, social and communal dreams. Healing and Transformation is believed to be the biggest challenge. With the lack of mutual respect and trust between groups it makes it harder for the “healing process” to move forward. But it is believed that when people are able to engage in the deep healing process, it develops one’s direction and heart for compassion towards others.
Boteler had an opportunity to sit and talk to members of the community about some of the issues that might be related to being able to find peace in that region. Boteler stated, “I learned that the Peace Process is a two-step stage preceding. You have to find peace in humanity of the other side. You also have to be Pro-peace and Pro-Justice, you can’t be for one side. You have to be for humanity. You have to have reliance on the Golden Rule, to treat people the way you would want to be treated. It’s hard to be optimistic sometimes, and I am glad God grated me the foolishness of believing peace can be achieved in that part of the country and in the future.”
Boteler also stated, “Even if there was a peace agreement reached, it still doesn’t mean the problem goes away. The agreement may collapse but the people there have to learn to respect one another for there to be a lasting peace. Peace is possible. Peace is politically impossible but historically inevitable.” Boteler also expressed, “Don’t be afraid to visit, I encourage it.”
Photo Provided by Amber Mena
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