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04. Jan 2006

Kristent 'Disneyland' på vej i Israel?

Kristen forlystelsespark i Israel
Vi skrev for efterhånden nogen tid siden om fremskredne planer om at bygge en hinduistisk forlystelsespark i Haridwar ved Ganges-floden i Indien.

Nu er der tilsyneladende planer om at lave et tilsvarende kristent "Disneyland" ved Genesaret sø i Galilæa.

The Guardian skriver herom:
The Israeli government is planning to give up a large slice of land to American Christian evangelicals to build a biblical theme park by the Sea of Galilee where Jesus is said to have walked on water and fed 5,000 with five loaves and two fish.

A consortium of Christian groups, led by the television evangelist Pat Robertson, is in negotiation with the Israeli ministry of tourism and a deal is expected in the coming months. The project is expected to bring up to 1 million extra tourists a year but an undeclared benefit will be cementing of a political alliance between the Israeli rightwing and the American Christian right.
Christian Science Monitor skriver også lidt om projektet:
"It thrills me to think that there will be a place in the Galilee where Evangelical Christians from all over the world can come to celebrate the actual place where Jesus Christ lived and taught. It will be our pleasure to fully cooperate with this initiative of the Israeli Government," says Mr. Robertson.
Some of the existing churches and monasteries the shores of the Sea of Galilee - such as in Tabgha and Capernaum, where Jesus lived for a time, were built as recently as the early 1900s by prominent churches in the Holy Land: the Greek Orthodox and Roman Catholics, represented by the Franciscans. But the area has not, more recently, been developed for visitors, says Dagul, and so the busloads of tourists who come to the coast north of Tiberius find it difficult to secure a place to pray and reflect, much less find a rest-stop equipped to accept hundreds of pilgrims.
Whether the development will resemble a study center more than a theme park is unclear. The developers say they plan to check kitsch and commercialism at the door. "No way will it be a Disneyland. We have to keep the spirit of the place," Dagul says. "You can see the movie about Jesus' life, then see the mountain," he says, referring to the Mount of Beatitudes, where Jesus gave his Sermon on the Mount, containing some of his essential teachings. "But if we lose this spirit, with too many lights and projectors, it will be a catastrophe."
På mig lyder det nu allerede, som om man er godt på vej ...

Det nye projekt ses som antydet i allerhøjeste grad som en styrkelse af alliancen mellem det det israelske højre og den amerikanske højrefløj. Der er dog også en del skepsis foranlediget af den antisemitisme, det kristne højre i USA - herunder ikke mindst Pat Robertson - er berygtet for, som den tidligere minister Yossi Sarid udtaler til The Guardian:
"I am not enthusiastic about this cooperation because I have no desire to be cannon fodder for the evangelists.

"As a Jew, they believe I have to vanish before Jesus can make his second appearance. As I have no plans to convert, as an Israeli and a Jew, I find this a provocation. There is something sinister about their embrace."