Catholics absent on israel/Palestine


On January 20 the United Church and Christian Jewish Dialogue of Toronto sponsored a day long seminar on Israel/Palestine. It was billed as a day of discernment and thoughtful discussion. Anybody who paid their money could show up was welcome. About 60 people showed.
Irrespective of the dialogue that ensued, it was a good attempt at raising the issue for church and synagogue people.
The United church to its credit has been grappling publicly with this for decades and its working group on Israel/Palestine put forth a policy in 2012:

It names the Occupation as a major contributor to the injustice
It advocates the end of all settlement construction
Calls on Israel to dismantle settlements and separation barrier
It identifies equitable access to water as a critical factor
It calls on Canadian government to provide leadership
it also affirms non-violent resistance to the occupation is justified
Acknowledges with deep regret the past policy of calling on palestinians to acknowledge Israel as a Jewish state as a prereq to peace.
This was the grounds for discussion.
One question: where is the Catholic dialogue on this cardinal issue?
Why the timidity of the largest church in Canada to even discuss this?


  1. 1

    I think the Catholic church is absent from the debate on Palestine because it has sold its soul to the Conservative government over their “Pro-Life” position on the abortion issue. They are allowing themselves to be used to support every kind of militarism and environmental destruction of the Conservative government, because they have convinced themselves that their concern for the life of the unborn trumps every kind of concern for the quality of life of those already born, be they Palestinian, Canadian or any other nationality.

  2. 2
    tschmidt Says:

    Now,now reg…a key cardinal is a big Tory no doubt and not much interested in justice issues…the major elephant is the large Jewish population in Toronto.please no ruffling feathers.

  3. 3
    mushafta Says:

    100 percent right on!

  4. Are there any Catholic parishes we can look to as an example of how we might grow in greater solidarity with the Palestinean cause? I see Jewish and Protestant groups doing great work in this area….but are there any Catholic parishes and groups we could learn from?

  5. 5
    tschmidt Says:

    Allen,Reg McQuaid’s comment is to the point. Most parishes are operating “beyond history”, disengaged. Add an email and i might be able to help you.

  6. 6
    mushafta Says:

    Carefulwhat you say here! You may end up in jail under Harper’s latest proposed law!

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