Challenged to a Ministry of Reconciliation in the Holy Land

The council adopted a public statement about the situation in the Holy Land, urging an end to occupation, land confiscation and restrictions on ordinary Palestinians. From the statement:

“Our visit here has opened the eyes of many of us to the daily sufferings of the Palestinian people, often not shown to us by the media and in which context our member church speaks boldly a message of hope and reconciliation.”

We reiterate our call for an end to the occupation, bearing in mind a number of its manifestations which contribute to the daily struggles faced here. We view the disengagement from Gaza as but a first positive step in following the Road Map and ending the occupation, establishing a two-state solution with a shared Jerusalem.”

“We found that freedom of movement has been significantly compromised or prohibited, for example, leaving married persons separated from their families because they lack the same required residence permit as their partner or children. This lack of family reunification is but one of a series of pressures upon Palestinians. Houses are being demolished by the Israeli authorities and other facts on the ground, such as the enlargement of Israeli settlements, are being created, forcing Palestinians off their land. The prevention of home and land confiscation and the creation of additional housing is essential in the Jerusalem and other areas to help maintain their human right to housing as well as the demographic status quo. The churches are assisting with such projects but need additional funding.”