Supporting Justice, Peace and Reconciliation in Palestine

It was a delight to support numerous Christian, Jewish and Muslim organisations campaigning for justice, peace and reconciliation in Israel-Palestine, marking the 75th anniversary of the Nakba at the National March in London held on Saturday 13th May. In particular, helping promote the work of Christian ministries, Pax Christi and Amos Trust, as well as the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) and the charity Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP).

This is entirely consistent with our charitable purpose of promoting religious harmony for the benefit of the public by promoting knowledge and mutual understanding and respect of the beliefs and practices of different religious faiths – as well as the Mark of Christian Mission “To seek to transform unjust structures of society, to challenge violence of every kind and to pursue peace and reconciliation.”

A Vision of Jerusalem: A Biblical Exposition

John Wesley preached outdoors because the Church of England denied him a pulpit over his evangelical theology. He could have left the Anglican Church but didn’t. They didn’t want him. His theology was too evangelical. His love was too extravagant. His methods too unorthodox. So they shut him out of churches and pulpits. They could not silence Wesley. Instead he preached in the open air – in fields, markets, and cemeteries and the crowds loved him.

In April it was my privilege to read and expound the scriptures in the open air in Whitehall outside Downing Street before an estimated 15,000+ Jews, Muslims, Christians and those of no faith. It was truly one of the highlights of my ministry. (click on the photo above to watch my presentation).

The text of my presentation together with photos and more short videos may be found here.

Statement on the Commemoration by the Palestinians of the “Al-Nakba”

Acknowledging our communities’ commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the “Al-Nakba,” along with that of their fellow Palestinians, the Council of Patriarchs and Heads of the Churches in Jerusalem reiterates the Churches’ call to strive for a just and lasting peace for our land, the Holy Land.

Our faith teaches us that we are all brothers and sisters in humanity, and that we must unite and worktogethertoachievepeace,tolerance,andjustice.Christianityhastaughtusthatlove, compassion, and mutual respect are the path to achieving peace in the world, and this is especially applicable to our beloved Holy Land.

We pray for all members of our churches and the rest of the people in our land, and we urge everyone to work together to build a better and more humane future for all. We remind everyone that peace can only be achieved when there is fairness and respect for human rights and international law.

We believe that justice and peace are the keys to stability and prosperity in the region, and we declare our readiness to work with all concerned parties to achieve these noble goals. We call upon the international community to play a greater role in supporting the protection of our communities and in preserving holy sites and the current “Status Quo” rules under The Hashemite Custodianship as well as striving to achieve a permanent and just peace in the region, based on international legitimacy and United Nations resolutions.

Our beloved Holy Land is “the home of the three faiths.” We pray for God to grant us all wisdom as we work to move towards a better future, and to provide the Palestinian people the right to self- determination, state building, and prosperity—allowing all the peoples of this Land to live in peace, dignity, and prosperity.

The Council of Patriarchs and Heads of the Churches in Jerusalem

Meet Francesca Albanese: The UN Special Rapporteur for Palestine

A special webinar with UN Special Rapporteur for Palestine, Francesca Albanese, organised by the Convivencia Alliance and Jewish Network for Palestine. 26th April, 2023.

Francesca Albanese spoke on: Reporting on Rights under Occupation: the work of the UN Special Rapporteur in Palestine.

The Respondents were: Prof. Nur Masalha (SOAS) and Prof. Ilan Pappe (University of Exeter). The meeting was chaired by Prof. Haim Bresheeth-Zabner (SOAS).

Ranjan Solomon joins Peacemaker International Board of Reference

We are delighted that Ranjan Solomon has kindly agreed to join the Peacemaker International Board of Reference. Ranjan is a freelance writer, organisational consultant and human rights activist living in Goa. 

Ranjan served for 33 years with the YMCA in refugee services in Bangladesh and India. He was also Executive for Justice and Development in the Asia-Pacific Alliance of YMCAs. 

Before retirement he was Executive Secretary, Communications, Mission and Ecumenical Concerns, World Alliance of YMCAs. He was also General Secretary, Ecumenical Coalition for Third World Tourism (ECTWT) and a consultant for the Palestine-Israel Ecumenical Forum, World Council of Churches (2009-2016). He was President, National Confederation of Human Rights (now banned by the Government of India). 

Ranjan is executive director of  Badayl (Arabic for ‘Alternatives’) is a Consultancy that deals with Organizational Development for organizations that address questions of justice, peace, and human rights. Badayl facilitates’ ‘Future Search ” process which results in arriving at new paradigms of organizational development consistent with leadership/management trends that are  contemporary and out-of-the-box in scope. Some of Badayl’s projects include a Global Review-Research on “Environmental Democracy, An Evaluation of an NCCI initiative: “Freedom of Religion and Belief”. Other evaluations involved a review of the work carried out in Chechnya at the height of the war with Russia. The evaluation looked at Future Search and a capacity-assessment of the organization. A major evaluation of the Yakkum Emergency Unit in Indonesia during the inter-religious conflict in Medan. Badayl served as Consultant to the Caritas-Goa’s programme for justice in tourism in Goa (Centre for Responsible Tourism). Badayl supported a study on “The Question of Water in tourism (Water as a right of ‘The Commons’)”. 

Ranjan is the co-founder and Core Group member/Program Coordinator of the Movement for Liberation from Nakba (MLN) a coalition of organizations and individuals from Southeast Asia, South Asia, Australia, the UK and South Africa which disseminates knowledge about Palestine in the Global South. He is Convener of Indo Palestine Solidarity Network and Global Kairos for Asia Pacific Palestine Solidarity Network. He is an Op Ed writer for The Goan.  

Convivencia: A Just Peace in Palestine – Jewish Perspectives

This was the second in a series of four webinars organised by the Convivencia Alliance which took place in January 2023.

The four distinguished speakers were:

Ronnie Kasrils, Cape Town
Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi, London
Prof. Daniel Boyarin, San Francisco
Prof. Haim Bresheeth-Zabner, London

The webinar was chaired by Dr. Les Levdow, London

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