Honoring 40 Years of Friendship

Rededication of the "Children's Playground" in Liberty Bell Park

More than 70 friends from the Philippines and members of the Church of God, ARK of the Covenant joined us in Jerusalem to rededicate the “Children’s Playground” in Liberty Bell Park.

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 Why a re-dedication? More than 40 years ago, the original Children’s Playground came to fruition thanks to a deep and lasting friendship between Herbert W. Armstrong, the President of the Worldwide Church of God in Philadelphia, and then Mayor of Jerusalem Teddy Kollek.  The playground was dedicated in 1978, and members of the Church returned to Jerusalem last month to rededicate the Children’s Playground after its recent renovation.

Hwa With Mayor Teddy Kollek In Jerusalem

Mr. Armstrong and Mayor Teddy Kollek came from vastly different worlds but shared a common love and a deep devotion to Jerusalem. Believing that peace among different faiths is possible in Jerusalem, the ARK of God Foundation saw the Children’s Playground as an opportunity to renovate a space where children of all faiths, Jews, Muslims and Christians, could play.

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In advance of the dedication ceremony, Jerusalem’s children illustrated and wrote messages to Jerusalem’s children of the future. The messages were placed in a time capsule, and the children, together with the Philippine delegation, buried it hoping it will be found many many decades from now.

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Thanks to the sculptor Sue Ella, play statues were created that allow children to climb and slide.  The king and queen structures, each 6 meters high, were not whimsical choices. They were chosen they touch on the theme of a “kingdom,” as Jerusalem is referred to in the bible. 

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This project would not be possible without the support of the Jerusalem Municipality. When the surrounding landscape is complete, we will once again greet members of the ARK of God Foundation in Jerusalem to enjoy the final product!

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Photo Credit: Sasson Tiram