Over 100 US Congregations Reflect on Plight of Palestinian Christians, Rebuking Administration’s Christian Zionism
Less than two weeks after Mike Pompeo visited a museum in Jerusalem honoring Christian Zionism, more than 115 U.S. Christian congregations representing 10 of the largest Protestant denominations and the Catholic church preached on the plight of Palestinian Christians and Muslims living under Israeli occupation.
Organized by Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA), which supports the work of the Jerusalem-based Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center, the “Keep Awake” campaign called on Christian congregations throughout the U.S. and the world to “Preach Palestine,” and reflect on how their parishioners can support peace and justice in the Holy Land.
The effort, planned for November 29 to mark the first day of Advent and the U.N. Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, took on political significance in light of Pompeo’s visit.
“We had a lot of churches commit to participate after they heard Pompeo’s anti-Palestinian rhetoric,” said Rochelle Watson, FOSNA’s National Organizer, adding “It was clearly important to them to say, ‘He doesn’t speak for us. We have a more just message,’ and they are saying that from the pulpit.”
Palestinian Human rights attorney and Evangelical, Jonathan Kuttab, said, “As Pompeo is courting Christians in hopes of a 2024 Presidential run, it’s heartening to see churches take a principled position against politicians who try to use the Bible for a nationalist, right-wing agenda.”
Rifat Kassis, a leader of the Palestinian Christian organization, Kairos Palestine, was also appreciative of the effort, saying, “We are thankful to FOSNA for inviting American Churches to incorporate Palestine in elements of worship because we believe churches have the ethical strength, weight, and credibility to side with truth and justice.”
FOSNA has kept its resource online so more pastors and congregations can “Preach Palestine” throughout the Advent season. Fosna.org/keepawake