news releases

2005.10.11 > For Immediate Release
contact: Teresa Gleason - University Affairs
phone: 402.554.2762 - email: tmgleason@mail.unomaha.edu

UNO to Host Batchelder Biblical Archaeology Conference Nov. 10-12

Omaha - The Bethsaida Excavations Project at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) will host the seventh annual Batchelder Biblical Archaeology Conference and Reunion Nov. 10-12.

Scholars from all over the world will meet to discuss and present their research on the 2005 dig season at Bethsaida, an ancient city located near the north coast of the Sea of Galilee in Israel. Bethsaida was the capital city of the forgotten biblical kingdom of Geshur. It is one of the most frequently mentioned towns in the New Testament and the purported place where Jesus performed several of his major miracles.

All conference activities will be held on the UNO campus, and the keynote lecture is free and open to the public.

Geography historian and biblical archaeologist Anson Rainey will deliver the opening keynote address Thursday, Nov. 10, at 7:30 p.m. in the Milo Bail Student Center (MBSC) Ballroom. Rainey is a professor emeritus of Ancient Near Eastern Cultures and Semitic Linguistics at Tel Aviv University, Israel. The title of his address is "The Rise and Fall of the Aramean Kingdom of Damascus."

Conference activities will continue Friday, Nov. 11, in the MBSC Ballroom and conclude Saturday, Nov. 12, in Eppley Auditorium.

"Over the years, the Batchelder Conference for Biblical Archaeology has gained the prestige of a high quality international conference that attracts scholars and laypeople from around the world," said Rami Arav, director of the Bethsaida Excavations Project at UNO. "It brings to a large audience the most updated discoveries and thoughts."

In 1991, the Consortium of the Bethsaida Excavations Project (CBEP) was formed and has been housed at UNO since its inception. Its mission is to excavate the ancient city of Bethsaida, research the data discernible from the remains, and disseminate the conclusions to both academic and popular audiences.

The conference is co-sponsored by International Studies and Programs at UNO, and the Greenberg Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Hartford.

To register or for more information and a complete schedule of events, contact Steve Reynolds, Bethsaida Excavations Project coordinator, at (402) 554-3108.

For more information about the Bethsaida Excavations Project, visit the Web at http://www.unomaha.edu/bethsaida/.

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