17 May, 2013
The Church and Society Council of the Church of Scotland today, May 17, has released a revised version of its report, 'The Inheritance of Abraham?' prior to the meeting of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland next week.
The language used in the previous version had caused controversy in some parts of the Jewish community in Britain and abroad. Following a meeting with representatives of the Jewish community in Britain facilitated by the Council of Christians and Jews, the Church and Society Council agreed to review its report.
Reverend Sally Foster-Fulton, Convener of the Church and Society Council said: “We are grateful for the dialogue that has grown out of the questions being asked of our report. We believe that this new version has paid attention to the concern some of the language of the previous version caused amongst the Jewish community whilst holding true to our concerns about the injustices being perpetrated because of policies of the Government of Israel against the Palestinian people that we wanted to highlight. The views of this report are consistent with the views held by the Church of Scotland over many years.
“We are clear that the citizens of the State of Israel have a right to live in peace and security. We are clear that there should be a Palestinian State which also can live in peace and security. We condemn anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. We will always condemn acts of terrorism, violence and intimidation whether the perpetrator is an individual, a community or a government.”
Mrs Foster-Fulton continued: “We remain committed to dialogue and conversation, especially with those who we may disagree. We are particularly concerned to make sure that those who are on the margins and whose voices are rarely heard get the opportunity to be listened to. We specifically stand in solidarity with Christians who live in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory and we will also continue to listen to the voice of the Jewish community here in Scotland and abroad.”
The report will now be presented to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland next week for discussion.