By CLIVE BUTCHER
Thursday 15 October 2020
The Olive Harvest.
The annual olive harvest season has started and the World Council of Churches has launched a global initiative to highlight the spiritual , economic and cultural importance of the olive harvest for Palestinian communities.
There are more than 10 million olive trees in the West Bank and up to 100,000 Palestinian families depend on the olive harvest for their income. However the military occupation limits access to the care of trees with restrictions on movement .
The olive tree features several times in the Bible , Psalm 52 verse 8 says ' But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God . I trust in the steadfast love of God for ever and ever ' .
In Genesis 8 verse 11 ' the dove came back to him in the evening and in its beak was a freshly plucked olive leaf '.
Romans 11 reminds us that we are a ' wild olive shoot ' grafted to share the rich olive root.
In Revelation 11 verse 4 ' These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the Earth'.
We see the symbolism of the olive tree for our faith but today for many it represents continued wellbeing and prosperity.
The olive tree is but one example of the many gifts you have given us yet we still fail to recognise this and share as you would wish . May peace and justice come to the land where you trod so long ago. Amen