Pilgrims of Ibillin is dedicated to supporting organizations and individuals committed to achieving peaceful coexistence and mutual respect among Muslim, Jewish, and Christian communities in the Holy Land.

Focusing primarily on education, we support programs and institutions where young people are given outstanding opportunities to study and grow as well-rounded leaders, grounded in a commitment to peacemaking and reconciliation. We affirm with Archbishop Elias Chacour that as Christians, Muslims, and Jews we are incomplete without each other. In that context we also demonstrate a special concern for the dwindling Christian population in the Holy Land, the “Living Stones.”

We work primarily but not exclusively with the Mar Elias Educational Institutions (MEEI) in Ibillin, a village in the Galilee.  Father Chacour, MEEI’s founder, articulated a goal that Pilgrims of Ibillin has adopted: “We intend to build peace on the desktops.”  See our web site section on MEEI for more information about these truly transformative institutions.

Pilgrims of Ibillin is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization founded in 1995 at Grosse Pointe Presbyterian Church near Detroit. Father Chacour had been there for an extended visit and exchanges between the congregation and the schools in Ibillin led to a permanent relationship. In the intervening years Pilgrims of Ibillin has become a nationwide organization with a dozen chapters and thousands of supporters.

Our support is through financial contributions, sponsorship of pilgrimages, placement of volunteers, and interpretation of the vision of MEEI and similar organizations to foster greater understanding of issues related to Christians, Muslims, Jews and the Druze living together in peace in the Holy Land.

Long ago a young boy on a hillside in Galilee stepped forward, offering the limited resources he had – five loaves and two fish. As a result thousands of lives were changed that day. (Mark 6:30-44)  In 1965 a young priest – Elias Chacour – arrived in the village of Ibillin with limited resources. His vision, energy, and faith have also changed lives, tens of thousands of them.

Today, Pilgrims of Ibillin offers to those with significant resources and to those with modest resources the opportunity to be a partner in changing lives in Israel/Palestine.

      The Rev. Dr. Robert Sawyer, Executive Director
P.O. Box 21461, Winston Salem, NC  27120
336-499-5310   pilgrims@triad.rr.com

        The Rev. Joan Deming, Development   Director
1541 Comanche Glen, Madison, WI  53704
608-241-9281  jdeming7@gmail.com