Activism

United Church of Christ votes to boycott & divest from companies profiting from Israel’s occupation

Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr

The United Church of Christ Palestine-Israel Network sent out the following press release:

The United Church of Christ Palestine-Israel Network (UCC PIN) is pleased to announce that today the plenary of the 30th General Synod taking place in Cleveland passed Resolution #4, calling for boycotts and divestment from companies that profit from Israel’s occupation of Palestinian lands.

“As disciples of Jesus, we hear and seek to heed his call to be peacemakers, responding to violence with nonviolence and extending love to all,” said Rev. John Deckenback, Conference Minister of the Central Atlantic Conference of the UCC, which submitted the resolution to the synod. “It is in that spirit of love for both Israelis and Palestinians, and a desire to support Palestinians in their nonviolent struggle for freedom, that the United Church of Christ has passed this resolution.”

“In approving this resolution, the UCC has demonstrated its commitment to justice and equality,” said Rev. Mitri Raheb, a Christian Palestinian and Pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land, who traveled to Cleveland for the synod. “For Palestinians living under occupation or facing systematic discrimination as citizens of Israel, enduring the destruction of their homes and businesses, the theft of their land for settlements, and living under blockade and siege in Gaza, this action sends a strong signal that they are not alone, and that there are churches who still dare to speak truth to power and stand with the oppressed.”

The vote, which was 508 in favor, 124 against, with 38 abstentions, was the culmination of a process that began in 2005 to end the Church’s complicity in Israel’s nearly half-century-old occupation and other abuses of Palestinian human rights. It also comes as a response to the Christian Palestinian community’s call for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions, as embodied in the Kairos Palestine document, which seeks to achieve Palestinian freedom and rights using peaceful means, inspired by the US Civil Rights and South African anti-Apartheid movements.

In passing Resolution #4, the UCC is following in the footsteps of sister mainline churches like the Presbyterian Church (USA), which passed a similar resolution last year divesting from Israel’s occupation, and the United Methodists, who voted to boycott products made in Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories and whose pension board divested from G4S, a prison service company, due in part to its dealings with the Israeli military.

UCC PIN expresses its gratitude to synod delegates, who faithfully carried out their duties in a thoughtful and responsible manner, giving the proposal the careful deliberation it deserved. UCC PIN also expresses its gratitude to our many allies, including those in the Jewish and Palestinian communities, for their indispensable and cherished support.

UCC PIN hopes that this modest initiative will help encourage the Israeli government to end the occupation, and looks forward to working in covenantal relationship with the UCC Pension Boards and the UCC Funds to implement this resolution moving forward.

Please support Mondoweiss today with a tax-deductible donation.
Please support Mondoweiss today with a tax-deductible donation.
55 Comments
Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

“The vote, which was 508 in favor, 124 against, with 38 abstentions, was the culmination of a process that began in 2005 to end the Church’s complicity in Israel’s nearly half-century-old occupation and other abuses of Palestinian human rights.”

Hurrah~ a HUGE margin of victory toward justice! Congratulations to UCC PIN! Now, spread the word. If every delegate speaks and explains why to 10 people, etc.

Encourage all to write a note of thanks to the people at
United Church of Christ Palestine/Israel Network,
for their conscientious stand for justice and peace in Palestine/Israel –

http://www.uccpin.org/#!contact/cudb

Very proud of the UCC in sending this unequivicable message in support of human rights.

Good news! I hope more Christian denominations follow suit; it’s really hard to understand why the followers of Jesus would not do so. I wonder how those who say they must stand with the Jews in any case, which they interpret to mean Israel, the state birthed in 1948 by conflating the word Israel in the Old Testament, how do they answer “What would Jesus do?” Surely they know Jesus was a Jew? The only… Read more »

Waiting for DoubleStandard to come here and tell us how BDS isn’t going anywhere.