Guide gives voice to Palestinian Christians

It’s a small booklet—47 pages—but with much food for thought.

A snapshot of Bethlehem from Andrea Mann’s 2009 partnership trip to the Middle East. ANDREA MANN
A snapshot of Bethlehem from Andrea Mann’s 2009 partnership trip to the Middle East. ANDREA MANN

A Moment of Truth: Kairos Palestine is a new, ecumenical study guide that offers a Christian message to the world about what is happening on the ground in Palestine. The booklet is produced by the Canadian Churches’ Forum for Global Ministries (CCFGM), an ecumenical global ministry coalition co-founded by the Anglican Church of Canada.

“This resource introduces us to an important piece that is often missing in the historical and contemporary narrative about life in the Holy Land today,” said Dr. Andrea Mann, General Synod’s global relations coordinator.

At the core of the booklet is the 2009 Kairos Palestine document, written by Palestinian Christians and described as “A word of faith, hope and love from the heart of Palestinian suffering.” CCFGM has added background information, maps, a rationale for study, and a three-session study guide.

The Kairos Palestine document results from much collaboration. It was developed through a two-year consultation process and first published in Arabic for Christians in the Palestine region. Later it was translated into other languages to reach a global community.

The word “kairos” comes from the Greek word for “time.” In church circles, it is used to refer to a special time of opportunity when people are called to join God’s redemptive activity.

The Anglican Church of Canada has expressed its commitment to peace and justice for Palestine and Israel in several ways. The foundation for the church’s work is its strong, historic partnership with the Anglican Diocese of Jerusalem, which includes both Israel and Palestine.

The Bishop of Jerusalem, the Right Rev. Suheil Dawani, was one of 13 Jerusalem patriarchs and heads of churches who supported Kairos Palestine in an official letter, also included in the CCFGM publication.

In 2010, in the presence of guest Bishop Dawani, General Synod passed a resolution expressing its commitment to the pursuit of peace and justice for all in Palestine and Israel. The resolution asked the Anglican Church of Canada to review related documents endorsed by church and interfaith dialogue partners and to commend them to the church.

Although the Kairos Palestine document was not named specifically in this resolution, Ms. Mann said that it should be considered as one of many important documents that will assist the pursuit of peace and justice in the region.

The United Church of Canada and the Presbyterian Church in Canada are also promoting Kairos Palestine within their communities.

Ms. Mann notes that the guide will provoke many reactions:

“For some, A Moment of Truth: Kairos Palestine will provoke impatience or annoyance, a critique of imbalance or partiality,” she said.

“For others, the document may challenge beliefs and language about the roots and nature of conflict between Palestinians and Israelis. For others still, A Moment of Truth: Kairos Palestine provides the important missing piece in historical narratives about Palestinians, their realities, faith communities and vision of the future, that is, the Palestinian Christian story.”

  • For more information on this resource contact Dr. Andrea Mann, General Synod’s global relations coordinator, by email or phone: (416) 924-9199 ext. 265.

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