Condemning Threats Against the Presbyterian Church USA

On October 22nd, I posted about the problematic nature of the Presbyterian Church (USA) divestiture of funds from Israel and meeting with the known terrorist organization Hizbollah. Recently there were some arson threats against Presbyterian Churches presumably in response to the Church’s actions. Such arson threats are inexcusable. Violence and the threat of violence is not an appropriate response to this kind of intolerance on the part of the leadership of the PC USA. Yesterday leaders of the Reform movement issued a statement about these threats.

Reform Jewish Movement Condemns Threats Against the Presbyterian Church (USA)

Yoffie and Saperstein: We are disgusted and outraged by those who have threatened to use violence and arson against Presbyterian churches to protest the Presbyterian Church’s (USA) recent steps toward divestment from Israel.

New York, November 14, 2004: In response to threats of violence and arson against Presbyterian churches in protest the Presbyterian Church’s (USA) recent steps toward divestment from Israel, Rabbi Eric Yoffie, President of the Union for Reform Judaism, and Rabbi David Saperstein, Director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, issued the following statement:

We are disgusted and outraged by those who have threatened to use violence and arson against Presbyterian churches to protest the Presbyterian Church’s (USA) recent steps toward divestment from Israel. The thugs who have made these reprehensible threats are far outside the mainstream of American Jewry, and we, the largest branch of American Judaism, condemn them forcibly, vigorously, and unequivocally.

We will, of course, continue to raise concerns about the Presbyterian Church’s (USA) policy, but, at the same time, we stand with the Presbyterian community in denouncing these threats. They have no place, no place, in public debate.

Link for the full text of the Press Release.

May the day come soon when all peoples and faiths respect each other and may God bring peace to Israel and the Palestinian people.

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