Speakers & Facilitators

Dr. Joel Willits

Joel Willitts is Professor in the Biblical and Theological Studies Department at North Park University. After graduating from Liberty University he spent 7 years in youth ministry in Texas, Florida and Illinois. He has had a wide breadth of experience within both the church and academy. Academically, Joel has researched and published books, essays and journal articles in the area of the Jewish context of the New Testament. Joel’s passion for the local church has remained strong throughout his education and professional life.

He is a fellow at the Center for Pastoral Theology, a group that promotes theology in and for the local church. Joel is married to Karla and they have twins, Zion and Mary. Joel loves to travel. His favorite sport is baseball (a Yankees fan). Joel enjoys reading biographies, and watching excellent TV dramas like Homeland and Breaking Bad. One of his favorite activities is going on long bike-runs with his twins along the Fox River.


We are a community of evangelical Christians who believe that following Jesus with integrity means that our lives are formed by our love for God, the teaching of the Bible and a fearless life of discipleship in the complexities of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. We believe that one of the first hallmarks of discipleship is love for both our own community and for our enemies. We wish to find Jesus at the center of everything we do and to make his life our life. Which means finding courageous love for Palestinian Arabs and Israeli Jews alike.


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