The reality on the ground is one of the Israeli occupation, and all that results from this situation: the dehumanizing effect of the Separation Wall; the effect of the Israeli settlements that ravage our land in the name of God and of force; humiliation at checkpoints; restrictions on religious liberty; and the suffering of Jerusalem where homes are being demolished or expropriated.
There is also the reality of the refugees, waiting for their rights to be realised, as well as the Palestinians who are citizens of Israel waiting to enjoy equality.
Young people, both Muslim and Christian, are emigrating in this absence of hope. The shrinking number of Christians is a dangerous consequence of the continued conflict.
We believe that the Word of God is a living Word, casting a particular light on each period of history, manifesting to Christian believers what God is saying to us here and now.
We know that certain theologians in the West try to attach a biblical legitimacy to the infringement of our rights. We 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.
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. We say that our option as Christians in the face of the Israeli occupation is to resist. But it is resistance with love as its logic. It is thus a creative resistance for it must find human ways that engage the humanity of the enemy.
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.
Our word to the Churches of the world is firstly a word of gratitude for the solidarity you have shown toward us in word, deed and presence among us. It is also a call to repentance and to revisit fundamentalist theological positions that support certain unjust political options with regard to the Palestinian people.
Our question to our brothers and sisters in the Churches today is: Are you able to help us get our freedom back? For this is the only way you can help the two peoples attain justice, peace, security and love. In order to understand our reality, we say to the Churches: Come and see. You will know the facts and the people of this land, Palestinians and Israelis alike.
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. We call on you to take a position of truth with regards to Israel’s occupation of Palestinian land. We see boycott and divestment as non-violent tools for justice, peace and security for all.
Our word to the international community is to stop the double-standards, and insist on the international resolutions regarding the Palestinian problem with regard to all parties.
To Palestinians and Israelis: our appeal is to reach a common vision, built on equality and sharing, not on superiority, negation of the other or aggression, using the pretext of fear and security. Let the state be a state for all its citizens, with a vision constructed on respect for religion but also equality, justice, liberty and respect for pluralism and not on domination by a religion or a numerical majority.