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Bateel Skycraper


Coincidental Companions

Coincidental Companions

Issue 87 December 2011

Garth Hewitt and Ibrahim Hewitt are friends who have different faiths but share a similar commitment to Palestine.




My friendship with Ibrahim has been sprinkled with charming coincidences. The first time I met him was on the platform of a rally for Palestine in Trafalgar Square. We were surprised to learn that my father and Ibrahim’s father were both called Thomas Hewitt, and as both our families came from mining villages near Newcastle we were soon chatting about whether we could in fact be related! Regardless of the hint of a family connection, I immediately liked Ibrahim. He and I both work from a faith perspective, and at the time we met Ibrahim was Chair of Interpal and I was Director of The Amos Trust. These are both organisations that promote justice and hope for the forgotten communities of Palestine.  For me, the situation in Palestine is a call to all of humanity to be committed to human rights and justice. 

We just seem to keep running into one another—sometimes at planned interfaith or Palestine-related events, and sometimes as the result of pure serendipity. Read More




Garth and I hit it off straight away. Garth has that skill of being able to put anyone at ease very quickly. He was wearing a cowboy hat, a necessary accessory for any rocking reverend. Later, I was impressed to learn that Garth even plays the guitar and mouth organ at the same time, à la Bob Dylan.

Our friendship developed when Garth invited me to speak at his church, All Hallows on the Wall in the City of London. Later, Garth, Rabbi Niles and I, spent a great few days in Guernsey in May 2005 at what was billed as the Channel Island’s “First inter-faith conference.” On the day after the closing session, a group of us had breakfast together at a restaurant near the harbour. The conversation was spirited and we joked about some names found in the southern states of America using Biblical terms, such as “Beelzebub” and “Apocalypse”. Niles suggested “Apocalypse Jackson” and we all agreed that it sounded too good not to be true. Read More


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