By Clarabel Marstaller
The offering taken at our Christmas program, December 22, will go to Friends School in Ramallah, Palestine. The Girls School was started first, the result of a girl in Ramallah asking Eli Jones (visiting from South China, Maine, in 1869) if he would open a school for girls in Ramallah (a small school for boys existed in Ramallah at that time). Schools were started in homes and in 1882 a building was completed — which was the start of the Friends Girls School. Meanwhile, a boys’ school was held in a home in Ramallah. In 1914 a building was in place. However, it was used as a hospital during World War I, first by the Central Powers and, as England prevailed, by English troops. In 1918 it began serving its original purpose. Today the girls’ school is the Lower School and the boys’ school the Upper School, both coed. New England Friends were very much involved in the early years of the schools. Joyce Ajlouny, director of Ramallah Friends School, visited our Meeting a few years ago. The schools are very up-to-date in their academic and technological life, thanks to their value in the Mideast. Our offering will help them meet the challenges they face.