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May 19 commencement will feature remarks by Middle East peace advocate Dr. Mitri Raheb

LTSP Academic LogoThe keynote speaker for this year’s commencement exercises in the seminary’s 151st year will be the Rev. Dr. Mitri Raheb, a powerful advocate for peace in the Arab-Israeli conflict.

The commencement is set for 3:00 pm Tuesday, May 19, 2015 at Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church, 1000 West Main Street in Lansdale, Pennsylvania. Fifty-three seminarians are scheduled to receive either degrees or certificates at the exercises. Senior Class President Mark David Johnson will offer remarks on behalf of his classmates.

Keynoter Dr. Mitri Raheb was born and lives in Bethlehem, Palestine, with his wife, Najwa. The couple has two adult daughters, Dana and Tala.

Mitri RahebRaheb is the president of Dar al-Kalima University College in Bethlehem and serves as the senior pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Christmas Church in Bethlehem as well as president of the Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land. He is also president of Bright Stars of Bethlehem, NFP, the U.S. organization that supports the vision for creating programs based on arts, culture, and identity.

Raheb is the most widely published Palestinian theologian to date. He is the author of several books translated into more than 10 languages. His most recent book, Faith in the Face of Empire, was launched in the U.S. early last year.

On a regional Middle Eastern level, Raheb, as president of the Diyar Consortium, has led several civil society research initiatives on “Religion and State” and the contribution of Palestinian Christians to society. His work has received wide media attention, including major international media outlets and networks such as CBS, HBO, CNN, ABC, BBC, The Economist, Washington Post, Boston Globe ,and Newsweek.

His writings and work have received several international awards, including the German Media Award that is usually given to heads of state (including former President Bill Clinton and South Africa’s Nelson Mandela); the Aachener Peace Prize, the International Mohamad Nafi Tschleibi Award, the Wittenberg Award, and more.

He is a widely sought-after keynote speaker around the world.

This year’s commencement will mark the first where LTSP’s President David Lose, who came to office in August last year, will preside.

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