Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies – Muskegon

View “Salam Neighbors” Documentary on March 20 at MCC; Q&A with Filmmaker Chris Temple

The film “Salam Neighbor” will be shown on Monday, March 20, at 1 p.m. and at 6 p.m., in Muskegon Community College’s Stevenson Center Room 1200, with each showing followed by a brief Q&A via Skype with filmmaker Chris Temple.

Presented by the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies in Muskegon, the event is free and open to the public.

The film documents the experiences of American filmmakers Zach Ingrasci and Chris Temple when they lived among 85,000 Syrians in Jordan’s Za’atari refugee camp, which lies seven miles from the Syrian border. The filmmakers, who were the first allowed by the UN to register and set-up a tent inside a refugee camp, spent a mSalam Neighboronth in Za’atari to cover what the UN Refugee Agency calls the world’s most pressing humanitarian crisis.

“Chris Temple and Zach Ingrasci, directors of the award-winning documentary, ‘Living on One Dollar,’ are once again entering a world that few understand or connect with by spending four weeks living alongside displaced refugees in Jordan,” wrote the film’s producers, 1001 Media, on its website.

“Joined by Ibraheem Shaheen, their young Jordanian translator and counterpart, they will live in the same conditions as refugees, eating the same food and sharing the same facilities. By fully immersing themselves in the Za’atari camp and the surrounding refugee communities, they will uncover the daily struggles, heartbreaks, and dreams that make up life on the edge of a conflict, providing a new lens into the life of a Syrian refugee.”

“Salam Neighbor” premiered in Washington, D.C. at the AFI DOCS film festival on June 20, 2015, and was released in 2016 by 1001 MEDIA.

Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies – Muskegon

Mailing address:
PO Box 452
Muskegon MI 49440



Pastor Christopher Anderson
Retired Chairperson
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

Mr. David Klemm
Vice Chair
Muskegon Area Intermediate School District 

Ms. Sarah Woycehoski
Fruitport Schools
Administrative Secretary 

Rabbi Alan Alpert
Congregation B’nai Israe

Ms. Trynette Lottie-Harps
Muskegon Community College 

Ms. Anna Alpert
Congregation B’nai Israel

About Us

In 1995 a Service of Commemoration was held at Samuel Lutheran Church in the city of Muskegon. Pastor Chris Anderson and Rabbi Alan Alpert gathered in the small Worship Center with 12 people in attendance. The service commemorated the 50th Anniversary of the liberation of the only remaining death camp, Auschwitz, and the many concentration camps spread throughout northern Europe and the murder of six million Jews and five million others because they were Slavs, Roma and Sinti, or their religious or political beliefs or their sexual orientation. The service also commemorated Pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer who was murdered by the Nazis at Flossenburg prison on April 9, 1945 for his participation the attempt to assassinate Hitler.

It has been a remarkable 20 years bringing primary witnesses to the Holocaust, individuals who lived in Europe and were part of the Hitler Youth, scholars in Holocaust studies. Various organizations have shared their gifts of music: the Cammerata Singers under the direction of Floyd Farmer; the Muskegon Chamber Choir under the direction of David Wikman; area high school and middle school choirs and instrumental groups from Reeths-Puffer, North Muskegon, Mona Shores, Muskegon High School and a diverse group of individuals.

In an effort to provide for this organization’s work into the future, a partnership was forged with Muskegon Community College and the Muskegon Area Intermediate School District. We moved from being the Shoah Remembrance Committee of Muskegon to the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies–Muskegon, whose mission is: cultivating values to diffuse hate and encourage diversity.

The Center will provide opportunities to the Muskegon Community which result in:

  • Education: The Muskegon Community learns, thinks critically and applies lessons learned from the Holocaust and genocide
  • Commemoration: The Muskegon Community remembers and reflects upon the victims of the Holocaust and genocide
  • Perpetuation: The Muskegon Community recognizes the ongoing importance of educating and commemorating beyond the immediacy of the victims of the Holocaust and genocide.

On June 11, 2015 the committee finalized the By-Laws and established its first board.