“What we pass to the next generations is not only the key, but also the way you respect other religions.”
This agreement between Joudeh’s Muslim ancestors and the Christians has helped build cooperation between the religions, Joudeh says.
“For me, the source of coexistence for Islamic and Christian religions is the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and that was when Umar ibn Khattab took the keys of Jerusalem from Patriarch Sophronius and gave security and safety to Christians in the region. We coexist and pass peace and love, which is the real Islamic religion.” He references history from 1,400 years ago, when Umar ibn Khattab, a Muslim, made an agreement with Sophronius, a Christian, to grant the Christians right of free worship in Jerusalem. To Joudeh, this history is still alive today, and it is his obligation to carry it on.
Why can’t there be a similar agreement between Jews and Muslims regarding our shared holy sites? I have a feeling if there were, so much crap could have been avoided. Co-existence isn’t that hard to do if we really want it.