For a brief reading
Excerpts from The Kairos Palestine Document:
Why now? Because today we have reached a dead end in the tragedy of the Palestinian people.
The hearts of the faithful are filled with pain and with questioning: What is the international community doing?
We call out as Christians and as Palestinians...
to the international community, and to
our Christian brothers and sisters in the Churches around
The reality on the ground:
The separation wall erected on Palestinian territory...has turned our towns and villages into prisons....
Gaza...continues to live in inhuman conditions....
Israeli settlements ravage our land in the name of God and in the name of force...
depriving hundreds of thousands of Palestinians, and constituting an obstacle to any political solution.
Reality is the daily humiliation to which we are subjected at the military checkpoints....
Reality is the separation between members of the same family, making
family life impossible for thousands of Palestinians...
Religious liberty is severely restricted....
Refugees are also part of our reality....They have been waiting for their right of return, generation after generation.
The thousands of prisoners languishing in Israeli prisons are part of our reality.... when will they have their freedom?
Jerusalem is the heart of our reality.... Jerusalem continues to be emptied of its Palestinian citizens,
Christians and Muslims....Their homes are demolished or expropriated.
Also part of this reality is the Israeli disregard of international law and international resolutions, as well as the paralysis of the Arab world and the
international community in the face of this contempt.
Human rights are violated and despite the various reports of local and international human rights organizations, the
In the face of this reality, Israel justifies its actions as self-defense,
including occupation, collective punishment and all other forms of reprisals against
In our opinion, this vision is a reversal of reality. Yes, there is Palestinian resistance to the occupation. However, if there were no occupation, there
would be no resistance, no fear and no insecurity.
Our presence in this land, as Christian and Muslim Palestinians, is not accidental but rather deeply rooted in the history and geography of this land....
It was an injustice when we were driven out. The West sought to make amends for what Jews had endured in the countries of Europe, but it made amends on our account and in our land. They tried to correct an injustice and the result was a new injustice.
Our connectedness to this land is a natural right. It is not an ideological or a theological question only. It is a matter of life and death. There are those who do not agree with us, even defining us as enemies only because we declare that we want to live as free people in our land.
We declare that any use of the Bible to legitimize or support political options and positions that are based upon injustice, imposed by one person on another, or by one people on another, transform religion into human ideology and strip the Word of God of its holiness, its universality and truth.
We also declare that the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land is a sin against God and humanity because it deprives the Palestinians of their basic human rights, bestowed by God. It distorts the image of God in the Israeli who has become an occupier just as it distorts this image in the Palestinian living under occupation.
One of the most important signs of hope is the steadfastness of the generations, the belief in the justice of their cause and the continuity of memory,
which does not forget the "Nakba" (catastrophe) and its significance.
Likewise significant is the developing awareness among many Churches throughout the world
and their desire to know the truth about what is going on here.
Even the new US position that has been announced by
President Obama, with a manifest desire to put an end to the tragedy, has not been able to make a change in our reality.
The clear Israeli response, refusing any solution, leaves no room for positive expectation. Despite this, our hope remains strong, because it is from God.
The mission of the Church is prophetic, to speak the Word of God courageously, honestly and lovingly in the local context and in the midst of daily events. If she does take sides, it is with the oppressed, to stand alongside them....
Love is seeing the face of God in every human being. Every person is my brother or my sister. However, seeing the face of God in everyone does not mean accepting evil or aggression on their part. Rather, this love seeks to correct the evil and stop the aggression.
The injustice against the Palestinian people which is the Israeli occupation, is an evil that must be resisted. It is an evil and a sin that must be resisted and removed.
Through our love, we will overcome injustices and establish foundations for a new society....Our future and their future are one.
We call on Israel to give up its injustice towards us, not to twist the truth of reality of the occupation by pretending that it is a battle against terrorism. The roots of
"terrorism" are in the human injustice committed and in the evil of the occupation.
These must be removed if there be a sincere intention to remove "terrorism."
Palestinian civil organizations...
religious institutions call on individuals, companies and states to engage in divestment and in an economic and commercial boycott of everything produced by the occupation.
We understand this to integrate the logic of peaceful resistance.
These advocacy campaigns must be carried out with courage, openly
sincerely proclaiming that their object is not revenge but rather to put an end to the
The aim is to free both peoples from extremist positions of the different Israeli governments, bringing both to justice and reconciliation....
as indeed happened in
South Africa and with many other liberation movements in the world.
Our numbers are few but our message is great and important. Our land is in urgent need of love. Our love is a message to the Muslim and to the Jew, as well as to the world.
We condemn all forms of racism, whether religious or ethnic, including anti- Semitism and Islamophobia,
and we call on you to condemn it and oppose it in all its manifestations.
At the same time we call on you to say a word of truth...with regard to Israel’s occupation of Palestinian land.
...we see boycott and disinvestment as tools of non violence for justice, peace and security for all.
We believe that God’s goodness will finally triumph over the evil of
hate and of death that still persist in our land.
We will see here "a new land" and "a new human being," capable of rising up in the spirit to love each one of his or her brothers and sisters.