Wednesday, February 23, 2005

 

Good News

In today's Haaretz there is an article about the World Council of Churches Central Committee's decision to encourage members to divest from companies profiting from the Israeli occupation. The WCC CC report is online here and:
The Central Committee, meeting in Geneva 15-22 February 2005 therefore:

encourages member churches to work for peace in new ways and to give serious consideration to economic measures that are equitable, transparent and non-violent;

persuades member churches to keep in good contact with sister churches embarking on such initiatives with a view to support and counsel one another;

urges the establishment of more and wider avenues of engagement between Christian, Muslim and Jewish communities pursuing peace;

reminds churches with investment funds that they have an opportunity to use those funds responsibly in support of peaceful solutions to conflict. Economic pressure, appropriately and openly applied, is one such means of action.
This is very encouraging. Having spoken to people who have been very active in trying to push divestment on campuses, I think that pursuing the divestment issue through churches, where you have a degree of unity of worldview, is much more effective and will precede any substancial campus divestment movement. Anyhow, there are a number of "progressive" stands taken by the WCC CC at its most recent meeting, including emphasizing international law (calling for the creation of the International Criminal Court and condemning the U.S. treatment of detainees at Guantanamo Bay) and calling on governments to remove laws that discriminate against indigenous languages and their speakers and to support indigenous rights.

And it looks especially progressive given the release of the pope's new book, Memory and Identity, which compared abortion to the Holocaust and characterized gay marriage as part of an "ideology of evil." How enlightened.

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