University of Haifa International School Student Blog
Bartaute interviewed 2 of our adult learners this summer and here is what she discovered:
1. Who are you?
Jeff and Annette Hammond
2. Where are you from?
We are Australians who live in Indonesia.
3. For how long are you here?
We are here for two months.
4. Why Israel? Why Hebrew? Why Ulpan?
Jeff is involved in Christian-Muslim dialogue in Indonesia, because of the jihad conflict that has taken place there. We have studied Arabic in order to be able to understand and discuss the Koran. Jeff has studied New Testament Greek in which the Gospels were written. Now we are studying Hebrew so we can read the Torah in its original language too. These three languages are the languages of the three “Holy Books.” Knowing them will help in any dialogue that takes place. Knowing modern Hebrew will be an introduction to further studies in the more ancient Hebrew. We have found the best place to study a language is in its native setting…so Israel! We don’t have a lot of time on our hands…so Ulpan!
5. What is your occupation? Was it hard to get such a long holiday from your work?
Jeff heads up a humanitarian foundation based in Indonesia and also is a part of a team of church pastors. You could say that what we are doing is part of our work…so it wasn’t difficult to get the time off.
6. How is Israel different from Indonesia?
The two countries are very different. Israel is tiny. Indonesia is the 4th largest country on the planet with over 230 million people. Israel is a wealthy country. Indonesia, though rich in resources, with many wealthy people, nevertheless still has millions of poor people. However both countries are ethnically and religiously diverse. Israel has its mixture of Jews, Muslims, Christians, Druze etc. Indonesia, although majority Muslim has 40 million Christians plus Hindus, Buddhists and others.
7. What other languages do you speak?
We both speak English (Australian!), Indonesian and Arabic. Also, Jeff can read Ancient Greek and Annette can read French.
8. Is this your first time in Israel?
No, we have been here on several tours.
9. What so far do you like the most here in Israel, Haifa?
We enjoy the archeological sites of Israel. In Haifa, we loved the walks through the countryside and also visiting Elijah’s cave.
10. What have you seen/experienced that you will associate Israel with?
We will forever associate Israel with the sites where the prophets walked, where Jesus walked. This is the land of the Bible. The stones cry out the message of history.
11. How do you enjoy studying intensively?
We love studying.
12. What do you do when you have time off from studies?
Jeff goes to the gym. Annette surfs the internet.
13. What would you say future Ulpan participants?
If you enjoy study and want to learn Hebrew….this is the best way to do it! It is very intense but a great way to learn.
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