Mercy Global Action Network Called to Recognise Nakba Day
May 14th marks Nakba (Catastrophe) day for the Palestinian people. At a recent gathering of the Mercy Global Action Network, Sr Kathleen Rushton called on the Mercy World to acknowledge the Palestinian people and to make an effort to learn about the significance of Nakba and its implications. We are invited to listen to Indigenous Palestinians in a significant document, ‘A Cry for Hope: A Call to Decisive Action. We cannot serve God and the oppression of the Palestinians’. Published less than a year ago by Kairos Palestine and Global Kairos for Justice, it calls on all people of faith for decisive action in relation to the people of Palestine over their continuing loss of land since 1947. The document invites “fellow Christians … to respond to our common witness” through several actions including: “Initiate processes at local, denominational and ecumenical level … for decisive action … on the misuse of the Bible… “Engage in study and discernment with respect to theologies and understandings of the Bible that have been used to justify the oppression of Palestinian people. Offer theologies that prophetically call for an inclusive vision of the land for Israelis and Palestinians, affirming that the creator God is a God of love, mercy and justice; not of discrimination and oppression… Oppose anti-Semitism by working for justice against anti-Judaism, racism and xenophobia, oppose the equating of criticism of Israel’s unjust actions with anti-Semitism.”
It is important to stress that the present crisis is over the imminent ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from the Occupied East Jerusalem area of Sheikh Jarrah.
What does this mean for us today?
We are invited to listen further to indigenous Palestinian voices in a 2009 Kairos Document issued by “a group of Christian Palestinians, after prayer, refection and an exchange of opinion, cry out from within the suffering in our country, under the Israeli occupation, with a cry of hope in the absence of all hope … to our Christian brothers and sisters in Churches around the world.” They call for us to “engage in divestment and in an economic and commercial boycott of everything produced by the occupation.”
People of Mercy are invited to gather with their community, family or friends to view a video of the Emeritus Patriarch of Jerusalem, Michel Sabbah, who was appointed in 1987 by Pope John Paul II and the first Palestinian to hold this position. This video conference, ‘The People’s Patriarch’, which was held in March 2021 begins with an overview of the situation Palestinians face. An interview follows with Patriarch Michel about his passionate commitment to justice for his people.
For more information:
“The People’s Patriarch”: https://vimeo.com/522039108.
Kairos Palestine: https://www.kairospalestine.ps/
Cry for Hope: https://cryforhope.org
Messages to Kathleen Rushton rsm