Terry Boullata's comments on Deborah Gerner

I knew Misty for 20 years. I loved her passion and dedication from the first time she came to Palestine with her husband Phil to analyze the different statistics we’ve collected at the Palestinian Human Rights Information Center (PHRIC) in 1986.

She was definitely a woman with destination and determination. She knew her destiny and therefore, she was determined to visit us again in Palestine, a country she devoted her life for.

She visited us last December with her husband Phil. She arrived home with so many presents and boxes filled with house food, biscuits, tea (that I still drink from), salmon dried roses and even table cloths. She filled me with so much Joy as a dear sister visiting me, bringing to me all what a sister wished to bring along to her sister home.

Christmas night was another destination for Misty. 6:15 we left the house in Jerusalem. We didn’t know if it will work or not, If the Israeli army will allow us through or not. But it did work and with another Palestinian/American friend, we were able to convince the army that the car is full of American tourists wishing to pray in the Nativity church.

7:30 we were standing in line at the doors of the Nativity church. It was so cold and the sky was raining as if crying Misty and her last pilgrim to the Nativity church. We stood in line pushing our way through among other tourists who were armed with special church permits to allow them into the church on that special night. We had no papers. We were only armed with Misty’s determination and destination to pray inside the church. Her insistence let us through half an hour later. The church was still empty and Misty headed to front of the church and stood next to an empty prestigious seat with a sign hanging on it: The president. Misty was standing next to Abu Mazen’s seat for the midnight mass.

Her eyes were twinkling and she pushed my 8 years old daughter Yasmin to sit on the presidents’ seat. The president’s guard allowed it and Misty took a picture. I wished that I have pushed HER to sit. She had strived all her life for Justice and Peace in Palestine, and she deserved the honor of being seated there!

Few hours later, while we sat on the floor of the church, the mass started and Abu Mazen with all the invited dignitaries arrived before our eyes to attend the prayers.

We did it Misty: We did enter Bethlehem and attend the Christmas mass. We promise you that we remain tuned to fulfill all your dreams of peace and Justice: In Palestine and elsewhere as we are armed with your determination and with your destination.

I love you and I will always cherish your sisterhood.

Phil: We love you and we are all here for you to condolence you and to cherish your love and commitment to us and to our beloved Misty.