Friday, July 19, 2024
HomeOpinionFaithA call to faith, justice and an end to occupation

A call to faith, justice and an end to occupation

“Inspired by the mystery of God’s love for all, the mystery of God’s divine presence in the history of all peoples and, in a particular way, in the history of our country, we proclaim our word based on our Christian faith and our sense of Palestinian belonging – a word of faith, hope and love” (Kairos Palestine Document).

On Monday March 18, members of Balmain and Leichhardt Uniting Churches met with their State MP, Kobi Shetty, whose office is located in Glebe.

Having studied the Kairos Palestine Document (2009), a call to faith, justice and an end to occupation in Palestine, Leichhardt Uniting Church (LUC) sent out its own Statement on a Just Peace in Palestine and Israel (2023) to various political representatives. Ms Shetty replied, requesting a meeting with church representatives.

LUC reports: “It was a great opportunity to discuss advocacy around a just peace, as well as local issues such as affordable housing and banning conversion practices. We look forward to continuing a relationship with our local member of parliament.”

LUC’s Statement includes the following:

We commit to understanding more about historical and ongoing violence in Palestine, and how this land, people and place is interwoven in the stories that ground our faith. We affirm the Kairos document and commend it to the wider church. We call upon the church to listen and respond.

We reject Zionist interpretations of scripture that legitimise the ethnic cleansing of Palestine and the vilification and dehumanisation of Palestinians. We are humbled by the invitation of Palestinian Christians to “come alongside us” and we renew our solidarity with Palestinian nonviolent resistance.

We affirm the right to Palestinian self-determination and acknowledge the Palestinian struggle as an anti-colonial struggle. We recognise the role of the Christian church in colonisation across the world and acknowledge that we must do more to build relationships with and support the aspirations of First Nations people in these lands now known as Australia.

We affirm the rights of all people to live in peace, justice and dignity. We recommit ourselves to anti-racism including action on anti-Palestinian and anti-Arab racism, Antisemitism and Islamophobia. We acknowledge the role of the Christian church in the persecution of Jewish and Muslim people historically and today. We commit to deepening our understanding of the role of the church in this violence and taking action to address it.

We acknowledge that God became human in the form of a poor, Jewish man in Palestine, was displaced, lived under occupation, spoke truth to power, was incarcerated and killed by the state. Such a life calls us, as followers of Jesus, to resist the forces of empire, occupation, and to rise up in the Spirit to love, do justice and commit ourselves to liberation.

Read the full Statement here: https://www.leichhardtuniting.org.au/palestine-israel…

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