Holy Land Task Force
The Holy Land Task Force was established by Action of the 2013 Annual Conference session, with the charge to research companies ”affecting the Palestinian people in harmful way” in violation of already established United Methodist Church resolutions, and to provide educational materials to UMC individuals, local congregations and districts.
The Task Force members (listed above right), many of whom have visited the Holy Land and can speak from personal observation and experience, are willing to make presentations to local congregations and other ministry settings. The Task Force can also provide study resources.
People of faith have been praying about this issue for a long time; the Holy Land Task Force believes it is time to add action to our prayers!
Holy Land Related Actions of the Annual Conference:
In addition to the 2013 resolution establishing the Task Force, the Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference has passed these resolutions:
- 2014 - Encouraging churches to study the Kairos Palestine Response
- 2015 - Divesting from stock in Caterpillar, Motorola and Packard until these companies end their involvement with the illegal occupation of Palestine
- 2017 - Opposing any state or federal legislation that seeks to restrict the right to address injustice through boycotts, divestment and sanctions.
This legislation included a provision that letters be written to legislators expressing the Conference’s opposition to so-called “Anti-BDS” Legislation. Read the letter.
- 2018 - Child Incarceration and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights
- 2018 - Human Rights and the Incarcerated Children
- 2018 - Aligning Investments with Values Regarding Palestine and Israel (renewed/revised)
- 2018 - Supporting Middle East Peace Efforts
Resources and Partners:
Answering the urgent call from Palestinian Christians ~ in Kairos Palestine: A Moment of Truth ~ for effective action to end the Israeli occupation and achieve a just peace in the Holy Land. www.kairosresponse.org
We are called to stand for generations to come, to build for our children a future in which violence is not an everyday concept.
Rev, Alex Awad
Rev. Alex Awad, Palestinian Christian and retired United Methodist Missionary, who spent 30+ years as Dean of Students for Bethlehem Bible College, made a presentation on Ten Ways Christians Can Do To Promote Peace in the Middle East at Portland's First United Methodist Church in 2017.
He has generously provided a copy of his Power Point as well as a written text. Rev.Awad has retired to the Eugene area, and is serving on the Task Force; he is available for presentations to congregations or other groups. Download his PowerPoint. Download his remarks.
Films for leaning and to spark discussion:
ISRAEL PALESTINE Conflict 101
An introductory 6-minute “cartoon” put out by Jewish Voice for Peace to explain the Occupation
Understanding Boycott, Divestment, and Sanction
another 6-minute Jewish Voice for Peace cartoon to help explain Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS)
This is Palestine
This 49 minute film is a good introductory film for individual viewing or for congregations
How Are The Children
A two-part film study on the incarceration of Palestinian children produced by the United Church of Christ.
Task Force Members:
Dee Poujade, Chair
Janine DeLaunay (Stayton)
Liz Jacob (Portland)
Karen McAlister (Boise)
Jan Nelson (Salem)
Claudia Roberts (Portland)
Rev. Alex Awad (Eugene)
Learn for yourself!
Travel to the Holly Land
The Oregon/Idaho Holy Land Task Force is considering sponsoring a “Study Tour” to Palestine/Israel in the fall of 2020. Such a trip will include the holy sites in both Israel and Palestine, as well as opportunities to meet with the “Living Stones,” Christians who are descendants of Jesus’ earliest followers and explore the current challenges to peace in the region. If you are interested in participating in this trip, please contact Dee Poujade for more details.