A Statement from All the Living United Methodist Missionaries Who’ve Served in the Holy Land
January 14, 2016
As past and present United Methodist missionaries in the Holy Land we affirm non-violent means of addressing the many injustices we’ve seen during our years of service. While there are transgressions on all sides, we believe that the illegal occupation of Palestinian land is the root cause and source of the conflict. We are therefore encouraged by the recent action of United Methodist fund managers to disassociate from certain Israeli banks, and hope they will continue this trend by removing from our portfolios companies and institutions that profit from the occupation. Such decisions will ultimately contribute toward the end of hostilities and reverse the cycle of violence in Israel/Palestine.
Yours in Christian Service,
Rev. Alex and Brenda Awad
Rev. Kristen Brown
Rev. Bob and Peggy Hannum
Janet Lahr Lewis
Rev. Peter Miano
Rev. Sandy Olewine
Rev. Romeo Del Rosario
Alex, If you want to add a United Methodist layperson to your list who served in the Holy Land even before UMC Missionaries (1956-1963), working with Palestinian refugees and who agrees with your statement, feel free to add my name. My late husband and I were two years working with Palestinian refugees under the Mennonite Central Committee and five years in Hebron working with Palestinian border refugees with Church World Service (locally the International Christian Committee. (ICC) UMCOR was one of many donors to the village and water development projects we were involved with.
And I am still involved as
Middle East Consultant with the Methodist Federation for Social Action (MFSA)
Host of Palestinian students here with the Hope Fund – four-year college scholarships to the USA (five of the students were at my house for three weeks of winter vacations),
active participant in Middle East discussion group at American University
most recently returned to P/I in October, 2014 with Interfaith Peace Builders followed by 10 days visiting families of students and old friends in Hebron, Aroub Camp, Halhul, Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Jericho and Amman.
Supporter and founding member of UMKR, presently on Divestment Committee.
Thanks, Ginny Lapham [E. Virginia Lapham, PhD]