• FEATURES \ Oct 13, 2003
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    Director of Nazareth Village receives Alumni Award
Director of Nazareth Village receives Alumni Award The award is given annually to a graduate who has been recognized for significant recent achievements in their profession, community or church.

The Hostetlers were cited for their ?visionary careers in communications and global service.? Mike is a 1975 EMU graduate; Ginny graduated in 1977. They have lived in the Middle East since 1996.

The couple has worked as a free-lance team on projects for a host of film and other visual projects, he as videographer or producer and she as writer, editor, researcher and interviewer. They have done projects for Eastern Mennonite Missions, Mennonite Central Committee, Mennonite Disaster Service and Mennonite Conference of Eastern Canada and other organizations.

Mike Hostetler?s media credits include serving as executive producer of the 1989 feature-length film, ?The Radicals,? shot in France, Switzerland and Germany on the life and death of early Anabaptist leaders Michael and Margaretha Sattler. He has been a board member of Sisters and Brothers, Inc., a non-profit film and video production group and served as assistant cameraman for ?The Weight,? a dramatic film for youth.

Ginny Hostetler served from 1984 to 1989 at Mennonite Publishing House, Scottdale, Pa., as editor of ?On The Line,? a weekly story paper for children ages 10-14, and has since been a free-lance writer/editor of book manuscripts, curriculum guides, brochures and film and video scripts.

Since going to the Middle East under the auspices of Mennonite Mission Network, the couple has worked to develop "Nazareth Village,? a replica of the Middle Eastern town in the midst of the modern town of 70,000, as it would have appeared at the time of Christ.

Mike Hostetler led a team that researched, designed and constructed Nazareth Village on a 12-acre site that features four houses, a synagogue, an olive press building and sheepfold. A well-trained, 15-member staff gives guided tours, hosts visitors, manages the gift shop and other daily operations.

The Village seeks to depict a cross-section of daily life and typical dress of first-century Nazareth and to capture details that influenced the teaching ministry of Jesus," according to Hostetler. "I believe it's as close as one can get to the first-century Middle East context," he said. The Village aims to make the life and teachings of Christ accessible to Muslim, Jewish and Christian visitors.

Ginny Hostetler has done writing and editing for the Village and is currently doing research about ancient foods. She also trains tour guides and leads tours herself and has helped host several EMU cross-cultural groups in the Middle East.

They have a son, Stefan, 15; and daughter, Sofia, 13.

To send an email to the Hostetlers, use the following link michael@nazarethvillage.com