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May 24, 2012

World Premier of “Across the Divide” Documentary Focuses on Bethlehem University

Salt & Light presents Across the DivideAcross the Divide, a documentary produced by Salt + Light TV of Canada, depicts the incredible steadfastness of Vatican-sponsored Bethlehem University as it is “caught in the cross-fire” of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Across the Divide tells the remarkable, provocative story of the first Catholic institution of higher learning in Palestine,” says Father Thomas Rosica, CSB, CEO of Salt + Light Catholic Media Foundation and executive producer of the documentary. “In a part of the world that has known so much conflict, animosity, monologue and despair, the Catholic Church's presence through Bethlehem University has offered a model of peace, friendship, dialogue and hope for the world.”

“I don’t know when peace and justice will come to this troubled land,” says Brother Peter Bray, FSC, Vice Chancellor of Bethlehem University. “But I do know that when it does come, what Palestine will need are people who are creative, ethical, committed to build this nation. That is what the people at Bethlehem University are about each and every day – forming that pool of people who are building the Kingdom of God here in the land of our Lord.”

“This film presents the story of Bethlehem University, caught in the middle of a sad reality of injustice, violence, intolerance and fear that dishonor the Holy Land, a land that should be a wellspring of hope and faith,” says Most Reverend J. Michael Miller, CSB, Archbishop of Vancouver. “By watching this film, viewers will take a positive step toward building a future of political and religious peace and justice in the region.”

Salt + Light, the Canadian documentary film producer and television network, will hold the global premiere of its most recent production, Across the Divide, in Vancouver, British Columbia on Sunday, 3 June 2012 at 7 p.m. Co-presented by The Catholic Near East Welfare Association (CNEWA), The
Archdiocese of Vancouver, and The B.C. Catholic, the premiere will be at the Djavad Mowafaghian Cinema located in SFU Goldcorp Centre for the Arts. Tickets are available by phone (1-888-302-7181 ext. 238), online ( and onsite (limited).

Across the Divide offers a glimmer of hope for the divided region through the heroic actions of the De La Salle Brothers, faculty, staff, and students (two-thirds of whom are Muslim and one-third of whom are Christian) at Bethlehem University, who sacrifice everything each day for their education and a better future for the Holy Land. The film captures the drama of a campus that, like the lives of its students, bears the scars of the intractable Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Media review copies available upon request on DVD or via private URL.
Documentary under embargo until June 3, 2012 at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT.

Across the Divide will also be screened at events in Halifax (June 25), Toronto (September 5) and Ottawa (September 19) as well as Montreal and Windsor at later dates. Each event will be followed by a Questions and Answers period with an expert panel.

Immediately following the hour-long documentary in Vancouver, there will be a panel discussion composed of Archbishop J. Michael Miller; Father Thomas Rosica from Salt + Light; Carl Hetu, executive director at CNEWA Canada; and Brother Jack Curran, Vice President for Development at Bethlehem University; moderated by Kris Dmytrenko, writer and co-director of Across the Divide.

All programming is also available through live stream at


Bethlehem University Foundation
Phone: +1-240-241-4381
Fax: +1-240-553-7691
Beltsville, MD USA
Bethlehem University in the Holy Land
Phone: +972-2-274-1241
Fax: +972-2-274-4440
Bethlehem, Palestine