9 October 2023
Previous Methodist Church responses to the situation in Israel-Palestine
Lincolnshire Memorial on antisemitism from the 2023 Methodist Conference
The Lincolnshire District Synod brought a Memorial to the 2023 Methodist Conference regarding antisemitism which can be read on in the Conference 2023 Agenda, page 641 listed as M6 Antisemitism.
The 2021 Methodist Conference memorials relating the 'Cry for Hope'.
The 2021 Methodist Conference received four memorials from circuits and districts on the subject of the Kairos Palestine statement 'Cry for Hope'. These were debated at Conference on 1 July 2021 and the draft Reply was agreed by Conference.
A further explanation of the position of the Methodist Conference on this Kairos Palestine statement is available here: 2021 Methodist Conference debate on 'Cry for Hope'
Council briefing on the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement
As noted below, the Methodist Conference in 2013 directed the Methodist Council to ensure that a briefing was prepared for the Methodist People upon the arguments for and against the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions Movement.
Following intensive work, since the Conference, the Methodist Council has directed that the briefing is made available online here.
It is hoped that the Methodist people will engage prayerfully with this Council briefing and the accompanying letter from the President and Vice-President, considering the issues carefully for themselves.
Gaza – A call for action
In July 2018 Methodist Conference passed Notice of Motion calling on Methodists to British Methodists to contact their elected representatives to end the blockade of Gaza.
In April 2018, following the deaths of Palestinian protesters killed by Israeli Defence Forces the President and Vice President of the Methodist Church made a public statement stating that the killing of unarmed protesters was unacceptable in any circumstance.
Resources for studying theological issues relating to Israel-Palestine
The Faith and Order Committee of the Methodist Church have provided a list of resources to enable concerned Methodists to engage with the theological issues raised by the historical, political, economic, religious and cultural situation of Israel-Palestine
Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Briefing
The Methodist Conference in 2013 directed the Methodist Council to ensure that the Joint Public Issues Team prepare a briefing document for the Methodist People upon the arguments for and against the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions Movement, and for the Methodist Council to bring a report based upon the briefing to the Conference of 2014.
The consultation has now closed: click here for an archive including the consultation questions.
Trading Away Peace
Europe is a prime export market for goods from Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory despite the EU recognising that the settlements are illegal under international law, says a new report from a coalition of 22 non-governmental organisations including Christian Aid, the Methodist Church and Quaker Peace and Social Witness (UK).
Entitled ' Trading Away Peace: How Europe helps sustain illegal Israeli settlements', the report calls for EU governments to ban the import of settlement products, which include fruit and vegetables, textiles, plastic furniture, cosmetics and some wines.
Read the report (Pdf)
Call for UK legislation to end the trade in settlement products
In June 2012 Christian Aid issued a call for legislation to ban the import of goods to the UK from illegal Israeli settlements. At Methodist Conference in July 2012 a motion was passed supporting this call. A briefing on this call is available at www.christianaid.org.uk/images/mp-brief-june12.pdf
Read the Methodist Conference 2010 report 'Justice for Palestine and Israel' and a page of Frequently Asked Questions about the subsequent Conference decision to boycott goods from illegal Israeli settlements.
Read the paper Justice for Palestine and Israel - update on the report of the Methodist Church, for information on work done since the 2010 report to Methodist Conference.
The Ecumenical Council for Corporate Responsibility (ECCR) has conducted research into UK supermarkets' practice labelling of food from Israeli Settlements, more recently in conjunction with the Methodist Church. See a summary of the findings and a suggested action in line with the 2010 Conference report.
Indiscriminate attacks are causing deep sorrow and outrage among churches and citizens in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, in Israel, and around the world. Meanwhile, the path to peace stands open but empty. It is especially incumbent on governments using or allowing the use of overwhelming military power to turn away from violence and oppression and take responsibility for negotiating a justice and lasting peace.
The Revd Dr Samuel Kobia
World Council of Churches
Calls for peace
Methodists have called for peace in Israel-Palestine for many years. The situation facing ordinary Palestinians and Israelis is intolerable and the continued violence and suffering endured by all inhabitants of the Holy Land is a cause for great sorrow.
The Methodist Church has supported a two-state solution, and believes that Jerusalem should have the status as a city for two nations and three faiths, with parity of esteem.
Methodist Responses to ongoing situation in Israel/Palestine
Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel - EAPPI
EAPPI is a scheme whereby Christians from all parts of the world can live and work in Israel and Palestine, alongside ordinary people, for a period of several months.
The Methodist Church supports the EAPPI, and in recent years a number of British Methodists have gone to Israel/Palestine as Ecumenical Accompaniers.
By living alongside Jews, Muslims and Christians, the Accompaniers can demonstrate solidarity and support to those affected by political, economic and social difficulties. Accompaniers also learn a great deal about the issues and are encouraged to report back on their return to their home country.
General information and real-life stories from Ecumenical Accompaniers can be found at www.eappi.org
EAPPI in the UK is administered by the Quakers. If you are interested in becoming an Ecumenical Accompanier, visit the Quaker EAPPI website.
The Methodist Church was the first denomination in the UK to develop an investment policy on Israel Palestine. This draws on principles outlined in our investment policy on Human Rights and Conflict. The Joint Advisory Committee on the Ethics of Investment (JACEI) has developed a position paper on investment in Israel and Palestine and in 2007 the Central Finance Board of the Methodist Church adopted an investment policy.
Several resources have been written to inform and encourage reflection and prayer about the situation in Israel/Palestine.
God's People is a Bible Study series prepared by the Methodist Church.
One Land and Many Voices has been prepared by Christian Aid.
Further information about the views of the Methodist Church on Israel and Palestine can be found in this collection of official reports, resolutions and decisions of the Methodist Council and Conference 2002-2013.