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Christmas Eve, City of Peace


. . . through the darkness, a search for light
From an article in the Dallas Times Herald, December 12,1984, by Amy Martin


If a documentary film informs the intellect, then a docu-poem informs the heart. Docu-poem is an apt description of Christmas Eve, City of Peace.

With the valiant efforts being made today to finally achieve Peace in the Holy Land, amidst the tragedy of increased terrorist attacks to prevent it, this video is as relevant today as when it was filmed in 1984.

The program draws the audience in and fully involves them in the search for 'true peace' on a Christmas Eve in Jerusalem and Bethlehem. Set amidst the ancient backdrop of the Old City and the surrounding hills, the haunting music of Steve Halpern provides a meditative background to the yearning for peace through the three faiths who call Jerusalem holy, and the failure, through its own devices, of humankind, since the dawn of history, to achieve it.
The producers allow the people of Judea-Palestine and the pilgrims gathered there for Christmas to write the script: In an alley, a youth says she doesn't think she'll see peace in her lifetime.
At Damascus' Gate, a young man wonders why 'we can't we be brothers when we have the same Father.'

In front of Absalom's tomb, an old man speaks out against the folly of so many nations all believing they are absolutely right.
Over and over again, people express a desire for peace and a frustration that governments seemed reluctant to achieve it.
The result is like a homecoming--a reminder that true peace begins in the heart and from that beginning perpetuates itself among those around us. It is a reminder of how much we of the human family have in common: our weaknesses, our failures, our strengths, our hopes. The audience shares in this family gathering in the Holy Lands. The words of peace and war we hear could have been spoken this Christmas or two thousand years ago.

The film concludes with an evocation of the spirit and hope of Christmas amidst the thousands from around the world gathered at midnight at the Grotto of the Nativity in Bethlehem.