Bethlehem Ambassadors and the Bethlehem Passport
Bethlehem Ambassadors are recognised and active supporters of the campaign and advocates of Bethlehem city, and as such make a vital and valued contribution to what we do and play an essential role in achieving our objectives.
Our aim is to increase advocacy for our vision as well as awareness, and the growing group of Bethlehem Ambassadors is playing a vital part in this.
Bethlehem Ambassadors are individuals from all walks of life, and include dignitaries, ordinary citizens, Christians, Jews and Muslims, who are united by their passion for Bethlehem and preparedness to champion it, working towards the realisation of our vision. As such they are expected and commit to an active involvement in the campaign, which may include:
Bethlehem Ambassadors are accorded with an honorary citizenship of the city of Bethlehem, formally conferred with the granting of a Bethlehem Passport, which acknowledges their contribution and confirms their pledge to act as an Ambassador for the city.
The Bethlehem Passport is issued by the OPEN BETHLEHEM campaign in partnership with the Governorate of Bethlehem. So far, the passport has been granted to more than 500 people around the world, including church leaders and heads of states, such as Archbishop Rowan Williams, Pope Benedict XVI, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and President Jimmy Carter.
The passport has been crafted as a beautiful object with deep watermarked pages, and a design that features both the star of Bethlehem and the figure of St George – Al-Khadr – the patron saint of Palestine. The citation inside the Passport reads:
“In that the bearer of this passport is a citizen of Bethlehem; that they recognize this ancient city provides a light to the world, and to all people who uphold the values of a just and open society; that they will remain a true friend to Bethlehem through its imprisonment, and that they will strive to keep the ideals of Bethlehem alive as long as the wall stands; we ask you to respect the bearer of the passport and to let them pass freely.”
We invite all those wishing to support our work to consider becoming a Bethlehem Ambassador.
The process starts here by applying online. Once we have processed your application you will be invited to join one of our Ambassador Seminars, which help people gain a deeper understanding of the issues, and provide participants with materials and communication tools to help them take practical steps to help keep Bethlehem open.
Join our growing Ambassador community and become a citizen of Bethlehem today!
Passport granting ceremony in Bethlehem
US President Jimmy Carter Receives Bethlehem Passport from Palestinian Ambassador Afif Safieh
UK church leaders receiving passports during their 2006 Bethlehem visit.
Malala Yousafzai a New Citizen of Bethlehem!
Malala, the youngest ever Nobel Prize Laureate, and her father Ziauddin Yousafzai, the United Nations Special Advisor on Global Education, are our newest citizens and ambassadors of Bethlehem!
"I feel very happy that I got the opportunity to see Open Bethlehem and also met the producer and director of the film Leila. The film artistically is moving and powerful. It makes you cry. It speaks for the freedom of people to have the right to live together no matter what their religion or nationality is. The film somehow had similarities to my life as well. My father inspired me to believe in the power of our voice and so did Leila's great father. I strongly recommend this film, it will not just inform you about the tragedies of Bethlehem but will inspire you, by the courage of Leila and her friends, to believe in yourself and your voice and become part of this movement. Thank you Leila. Your film is the voice of the people of Bethlehem and Palestine, whether Muslims or Christians or Jews. It is voice of the people."