- Listen to and share the Balfour Project podcast
- Call for equal rights for all living between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River – and for the British Government now to recognise the state of Palestine side by side with Israel. Share the call, drafted by the Balfour Project, with your friends and contacts. Consider writing to your MP and requesting they join the call.
- Talk to your bishop at the beginning of Lent about using Palestinian olive oil for the Chrism Mass. This would be liturgically meaningful and also an act of solidarity with the people of Palestine.
- During lockdown: Call to prayer/quiet on Friday evenings Every Friday at sunset, a small group gathers, near the vehicle checkpoint, in Bethlehem to walk and pray the Rosary. The Icon, seen below, is written on the separation wall and is of ‘Mary who Brings Down Walls’. It shows Mary Weeping. Please light a candle and join us in prayer/ quiet time as we now all do this while being physically distant. Bethlehem has been under lock down for a few weeks but today there is the good news that a number of people in quarantine have recovered.
Holy Land Coordination Group January 2020
The group is made up of Bishops from across Europe, North America and South Africa, making their annual pastoral visit to Israel and Palestine, as they have done for the past 20 years. A statement was released by the bishops at the end of this year’s visit. The group included Pax Christi International Co-President Bishop Marc Stenger and chair of the Middle East Forum of the Catholic Bishops Conference of England & Wales, Bishop Declan Lang.
Statements and links
- Report by Human Rights Watch
- The Vatican issues a statement reiterating support for a two-state solution
- May: British politicians demand that the UK imposes sanctions on Israel if any annexation goes ahead
- Joint Israel-Palestine Peace Memorial Day ceremony online event
- 29th April: Successful Supreme Court Ruling on ethical investment, following a long campaign
- UN Human Rights Office releases a report of business activities related to settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory.
- Responses to the ‘plan’ released by Donald Trump and Benjamin Netanyahu on 28th January.
Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England & Wales: ‘We are extremely concerned that the UK government has welcomed the proposal’
US Conference of Catholic Bishops : ‘the necessity that each state recognizes and supports the legitimacy of each other’
Balfour Project The plan ‘ will perpetuate the conflict and doom any hope of a genuine two-state solution.’
The Elders: ‘would make the two-state solution impossible, entrenching deep inequality along ethnic lines and moving the decades-old conflict into a new phase’.
Dan Smith at SIPRI: A short interview-style analysis ‘It seems to approve in advance the annexation of land, which is actually illegal. ‘
- European Coordination of Committees and Associations for Palestine report that UN officials say it is not anti-Semitic to criticise the government of Israel. A UN letter to the German government regarding new legislation, is now public, as Germany did not respond within mandated 60-day period
- UN Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator, Ms. Ursula Mueller, visited Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory. Her statement calls for a strengthening of international support to the occupied Palestinian territory.
- The Time is Right to Recognise Palestine. Letter to The Times newspaper drafted by the Balfour Project and signed by a wide range of parliamentarians, reported in Independent Catholic News.
- Remember Palestine this Advent and Christmas
- Update from the Arab Educational Institute
- Christmas letter from Joseph Hazboun of CNEWA Pontifical Mission – and his comments on Israeli elections
- General Pax Christi Resource on Israel- Palestine: updated for Autumn 2019
- Jewish Voices for Peace: Israel/Palestine 101. Film made a few years ago but still relevant for providing a basic understanding of the history
Statements about house demolitions:
- Governments of UK, France, Spain and Germany
- World Council of Churches
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
- Amnesty International
Background information from:
- August 2019: Information database from Israeli organisation Yesh Din which ‘consolidates all the bills and laws presented to the Knesset by members of Knesset which feature a characteristic or element pertaining to annexation: Annexation Legislation Database
- July 7th 2019: The Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PRHOC) issued a statement titled: “PHROC Condemns Israel’s Denial of Entry to UN Special Rapporteur, Mr. Michael Lynk: here
- From H.B. Michel Sabbah, President of Pax Christi International from 1999 till 2007 and Latin Patriarchate Emeritus of Jerusalem, on the present situation in Israel/Palestine
- Latin Patriarchate Assembly of Catholic Ordinaries calls on people of Holy Land to build bridges of respect and love:
- Keep up with UN reports here: United Nations Office…occupied Palestinian territories
Morally Responsible Investment – Resources
Think Twice: excellent report from Amnesty International, published in March 2019. Asks the question: Can companies do business in Israeli Settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories while respecting human rights.?
Investing for Peace: A guide for local church activists that calls on UK churches to implement Morally Responsible investment policies to ensure that companies that they procure from and invest in do not profit from or advance the occupation.
Produced by Sabeel-Kairos with War on Want, Pax Christi and AMOS Trust. Download here
Holy Land Coordination Group 2019
Series of articles published after the 2019 visit of the Holy Land Coordination group. This is made up of Bishops from across Europe, North America and South Africa, who have made an annual pastoral visit to Israel and Palestine for the past 20 years. Marie Dennis, Co-President of Pax Christi International was also part of this delegation.
Church statements on the Israeli National State Law
- Bishops of England and Wales oppose unjust Israeli law November 2018
- Statement from Bishop of the Evangelical and Lutheran Church 1 August 2018
- Statement from the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem 19 July 2018
15 July. Take action NOW in to prevent more demolition of Khan al Ahmar village
Download leaflet to share in your local church, J&P group, community. Use this, and information below, to keep informed and take action.
Statement from World Council of Churches, 13 July 2018 “Demolishing the homes and especially the school in Khan al-Ahmar is an inhumane decision violating the human rights of people already living in extremely difficult conditions because of decades of injustice,”
- Time for Action: British Response to Kairos Palestine. Read the full document here. Paper copy available from Pax Christi price £5.00 order here
- Kairos Palestine: document produced in 2009 by Christians in Palestine
- Summary leaflet on Kairos Palestine
- Here regular blogs from a partner in Bethlehem, Toine Van Teeffelen. Very useful insights into life in Bethlehem
POPE FRANCIS IN PALESTINE & ISRAEL
- Speech and prayer for meeting with Palestinian and Israeli leaders, Rome, 9 June 2014
- Speech to the Palestinian Authority 25th May 2014. Full details of all meetings/speeches