MennoPIN Monthly Update: January 2018

Ahed Tamimi at a non-violent protest march with other Palestinian women.

In This Issue
Ahed Tamimi: The New Face of Palestinian Resistance
Co-founder of Sabeel Challenges Trump
500 Christian Leaders Denounce Anti-BDS Legislation
Nassar Family/Tent of Nations Receive Peace Award
HP-Free Church Campaign
Read More
Prayer Poem

Ahed Tamimi: The New Face of Palestinian Resistance
Some even call her the Palestinian Joan of Arc, the 16-year-old who slapped Israeli Defense Force (IDF) soldiers outside of her home in the village of Nabi Saleh after her 15-year-old cousin was shot in the face with a bullet. At 4 am the following morning, IDF soldiers broke into her home and arrested her along with her mother, father and cousin Nour. Later, an Israeli military judge ruled that Ahed, who had not been charged with a crime, must remain in custody during her trial.

The arrest and detention of Palestinian children like Ahed has become the norm as Israel continues to flout international law. Magdelena Mughrabi, Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa for Amnesty International, said of Ahed, her “outrageously excessive” ongoing detention and military court trial are “an example of the institutional discrimination typical of the treatment of Palestinian children who participate in activism against the Israeli occupation and shows how Israel is violating its international human rights obligations toward children.”

You can view short videos of Ahed in detention here and a five-minute video of an earlier interview with her here.

MennoPIN encourages you to join Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA) and Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) in taking action to support Ahed and all Palestinian children by supporting H.R. 4391, a bill introduced in the House of Representatives by Rep. Betty McCollum (D-Minn). See the web pages of FOSNA and MCC for further details on action you can take.

Co-Founder of Sabeel Challenges Trump on UNRWA Funding Cuts
In addition to moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem, President Donald Trump has further crushed hopes for peace between Palestine and Israel by eliminating the US voluntary contribution to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA). Created in 1949 to carry out direct relief for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA called for Palestinian refugees to return to their home after the being forced out by Israeli Zionist forces in the 1948 Nakba (catastrophe). Alternatively, refugees unable to return would be fairly compensated for their land. From the beginning of UNRWA, Israel has refused to allow refugees to return or give fair compensation. The US has supported Israel’s refusal to cooperate with UNRWA by vetoing every United Nations resolution for compliance.

Samia Khoury is a co-founder of Sabeel and lives in occupied East Jerusalem. After hearing about the cut in UNRWA funding, she wrote the following to the president: “Yes, Mr. Trump, I assure you it is our rights as Palestinians that we are demanding, and not your money. However, once again you seem to support the oppressors and punish the victims, not only by denying them their right of return, but by denying them their basic rights as well: health, education and relief services that are very much needed in the refugee camps where the situation has further deteriorated due to the ongoing occupation; an occupation that should have come to an end with the implementation of the Security Council Resolution 242 which was unanimously adopted on November 22, 1967, and based on the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war.”

You can voice your opposition to the elimination of UNRWA funding and support of Palestinian human rights by calling the White House comment line at 202-456-1111.

500 Christian Leaders Denounce Anti-BDS Legislation
Inspired by the South African anti-apartheid movement, in 2005 over 170 Palestinian unions, political parties, women’s organizations, professional associations and other civil society bodies called for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) as a form of nonviolent pressure on Israel to honor the humanity, dignity and human rights of Palestinian people. They invited support from allies around the world. Since then, BDS has become a global movement of opposition to the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land and oppression of its people.

In recent years the BDS movement has blossomed throughout the United States. As a result, pro-Israeli and Zionist forces have begun to push back with anti-BDS legislation on both the state and national level. In one attempt to stand with oppressed Palestinians and challenge the threat of our constitutionally protected right to freedom of speech, nearly 500 Christian leaders from across the nation have signed a petition opposing anti-BDS legislation. Add your support here.

Nassar Family and Tent of Nations Chosen for Peace Award
The United Methodist Church chose the Nassar family to receive one of its 2017 Peace Awards. The Tent of Nations lies on the Nassar’s 100-acre farm located southwest of Bethlehem in a highly disputed area of Palestine controlled by the Israeli Government. The family remains on their land and share their story of peace with guests from around the world. The family is not permitted to develop their farm for agricultural purposes, not allowed access to power, water, or sewer infrastructure, nor obtain permits for any new buildings. The family has instead come up with creative and sustainable alternatives. Each summer, children from local villages (Christian and Muslim) participate in a summer camp aimed at giving the children freedom and distraction from the surrounding politics, empowering the children with self-confidence so that they can be a part of a better future for Palestine. The family also established the Bent Al-Reef Women’s Centre to empower women with classes in English, computer, art, etc., and encourage them to play a role in shaping society. Find out more about the Tent of Nations.

Support Palestinian Human Rights and Go HP-Free
Reach out to your pastor, church council and congregation to encourage your church to sign the HP Free Church pledge, committing to not buy HP computers, printers, inks, and other products until HP stops profiting from the illegal Israeli occupation of Palestine and human rights violations. For more information on how your church can become a HP-Free Church go here.

Read More
No Way to Treat a Child Campaign
More on the BDS movement
The Palestinian Portal Resource
The Tent of Nations
HP-Free Church Campaign

Prayer Poem
“When the song of the angels is stilled
When the Star in the sky is gone
When the angels and shepherds have found their way home
The work of Christmas has begun!”
(Howard Thurman)

MennoPIN Monthly Update: December 2017

The Alternativity by Bansky

Street artist Bansky has created new Christmas artwork on The Walled Off Hotel in Bethlehem, Palestine. The familiar message now has a caveat: “Terms and Conditions Apply.” Meanwhile, two angels attempt to pry open the wall with bare hands and a crowbar.

From all of us at MennoPIN, Christmas blessings as we together seek unconditional Peace on Earth, tearing down the walls of hostility that divide the Holy Land today, seeking peace and justice for Palestine and Israel.

Advent Bulletin Insert from MennoPIN
The MennoPIN Action/Advocacy Subcommittee has created an Advent bulletin insert to encourage a faithful response to the recent passing of the MC USA resolution: Seeking Peace in Israel and Palestine. You can find the bulletin insert on the MennoPIN website here.Update on BDS and Hewlett-Packard
Hewlett-Packard has spun off part of their company, effectively splitting the corporate giant in two. HP has been one of the main targets of the BDS movement because of its complicity in the security apparatus and infrastructure of Israel and its illegal occupation of Palestine. It is unclear which of the two companies is involved with the occupation. Until it is clear, the BDS movement continues to recommend the boycott of HP. BDS appears to be increasing its focus on the tourism sector, especially TripAdvisor and AirBnB. More on that in future updates.Update on the Esther Koontz lawsuit (ACLU vs. State of Kansas).
The ACLU is filing a lawsuit on behalf of Esther Koontz, the Kansas Mennonite who was denied employment in Kansas because she would not agree to abide by a Kansas law to not engage in boycotting companies complicit in the oppression of Palestinian people. In early proceedings of the lawsuit, the judge stated: “This law cannot possibly be constitutional.” Kansas state attorneys did not dispute the judges assertion, but promised to have a defense later. A similar case is being brought by the ACLU in Arizona.Mennonite Church USA and Mennonite Central Committee Strategize Support to HR 4391
Jonathan Brenneman, MC USA Coordinator, Israel/Palestine Partners in Peacemaking and Rachelle Lyndaker Schlabach, Director of the MCC US Washington Office are working on a strategy to form a Mennonite delegation to Capitol Hill that would focus on support of HR 4391, Promoting Human Rights by Ending Israel Military Detention of Palestinian Children Act. The bill would require the Secretary of State to certify that American funds do not support Israel’s military detention, interrogation, abuse or ill-treatment of Palestinian children.

US Embassy and Jerusalem
Jonathan Brenneman and Rachelle Lyndaker Schlabach were interviewed in The Mennonite magazine online, TMail, to explain the likely devastating impact of the Trump administration’s decision to move the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Please read the informative interview here.

Resources
The Mennonite Interview on moving the US embassy to Jerusalem
Palestinian Portal on the embassy move
Palestinian Christian voices on moving of US Embassy to Jerusalem: SabeelThe Latin Patriarchate of JerusalemThe Middle East Council of Churches

Prayer
The U.S. vetoed a UN resolution seeking to reaffirm Jerusalem’s status as unresolved, after 14 UN Security Council members voted in favor of the resolution Monday, in response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize it as Israel’s capital.
Lord, the Palestinian people are running out of options leaving only the “stones to cry out”. We give thanks for the brave countries of the world that refused to disrespect international law and challenge the unjust decisions of the United States Administration. We pray that the powerful give up on their useless efforts to maintain the Israeli military occupation. Lord in your mercy… Sabeel Wave of Prayer, December 21, 2017


Mennonite Palestine-Israel Network
mennopin@gmail.com | mennopin.org | facebook.com/mennopin | twitter.com/mennopin

Steering Committee:
Tom Harder (Lorraine Avenue Mennonite Church, Wichita, KS)
Joy Lapp (Pleasant View Mennonite Church, Mt Pleasant, IA)
Jonathan Kuttab (Palestinian lawyer and human rights activist)
Anita Rediger (Emmaus Road Mennonite Fellowship, Berne, IN)
Joe Roos (Peace Mennonite Fellowship, Claremont, CA)
Rod Stafford (Portland Mennonite Church, OR)

MennoPIN Update: November 2017

Please Consider a Financial Gift to MennoPIN
MennoPIN operates on a shoestring budget. We have no paid staff and the Steering Committee are all volunteers. We rarely ask for financial support, but today we ask you, our members, for some help.

There are two ways that MennoPIN incurs financial obligations. MC USA generously allows Jonathan Brenneman, their Coordinator, Israel/Palestine Partners in Peace, to give invaluable assistance to the ministry of MennoPIN and we, in return, provide modest financial support to MC USA. There are also times in which MennoPIN Steering Committee members are invited to an important consultation or to engage in networking, incurring some financial expense.

Thank you for any gift you can make to support the work of MennoPIN. You can make your check out to Pleasant View Mennonite Church with MennoPIN on the memo line. The address is Joy Lapp, c/o MennoPIN, 504 W Henry Street, Mount Pleasant, IA 52641. Your gift is tax-deductible. Thank you very much!

MennoPIN Joins Positive Development/Investment in Palestine Consultation
On November 20, the Everence community offered a valuable meeting opportunity for representatives of Mennonite-related organizations and agencies working and serving in Israel/Palestine. The gathering was the first of ongoing consultations mandated as part of the MC USA “Seeking Peace” resolution, Orlando 2017. Everence representatives discussed Everence’s mission, structure and funds, provided information regarding the evolution of military and human rights screens and the use of occupied assessment service. In addition to MennoPIN, agencies/organizations participating included: MC USA, Mennonite Mission Network, Mennonite Central Committee, Mennonite Education Agency, Christian Peacemaker Teams and the Peace and Justice Support Network. Mark Regier, Vice President of Stewardship Investment at Everence summarized the shared sense of those gathered: “The issue of positive economic development/investment in Palestine is both vitally important and incredibly complex.” Future consultations are planned.

Protect Palestinian Children’s Rights by Acting Now
For the first time ever in the U.S., legislation has been introduced to defend the rights of Palestinian children. The bill, introduced by Rep. Betty McCollum (D-MN), would require the Secretary of State to ensure that no U.S. funds going to Israel are used to violate the human rights of children. Please ask you congressperson to support the bill, Promoting Human Rights by Ending Military Detention of Palestinian Children Act.

MC USA Signs on to Letter Opposing the Israel Anti-Boycott Act
Ervin Stutzman, Executive Director, Mennonite Church USA, joined sixteen other Christian leaders opposing the Israel Anti-Boycott Act in a strongly worded letter. MennoPIN and MCC both support the defeat of this bill. Ask your members of Congress to oppose the Israel Anti-Boycott Act.

Oppose the Nomination of Kenneth Marcus for Assistant Secretary of Civil Rights in the Department of Education.
Marcus has a long record of filing spurious discrimination claims with the Department of Education to suppress Palestine activism on campus. He also supports anti-BDS legislation. See the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights for further information on how you can oppose Marcus’ nomination.

Please Continue to Support Esther Koontz.
School teacher and Mennonite Esther Koontz has been denied employment by the State of Kansas because she refused to sign an oath that she would not engage “in a boycott of Israel [or territories controlled by Israel].” She is filing a law suit (with the help of the American Civil Liberties Union) against the State of Kansas for infringing upon her First Amendment rights. You can offer your words of support and encouragement to Esther by sending an email to SupportEsther@MennoniteUSA.org.

Read More
MCC Washington Memo for more information about opposing the Israel Anti-Boycott Act.
Good resources for congregational study groups on Christian Zionism
Christmas/Advent resource for congregations from Kairos Palestine

Prayer
Members of Congress have introduced a bill to prevent U.S. tax dollars from paying for human rights violations against Palestinian children during the course of military detention. Israel is the only country in the world that systematically prosecutes an estimated 500 to 700 children each year in military courts that lack fundamental fair trial rights and protections.
God of peace and justice, we are thankful for this intervention, and pray that reforms are implemented to end violence against our children. We pray for an end to this unethical Israeli occupation. Lord in your mercy…
Sabeel Wave of Prayer, November 23, 2017

Make Your Church HP-Free

MENNONITE PALESTINE ISRAEL NETWORK
Make Your Church an HP-Free Church

MennoPIN encourages all MC USA congregations to become HP-Free churches. Hewlett Packard is one of the largest contractors for the U.S. defense industry and provides registration and surveillance technologies for various types of repression of Palestinians by the Israeli occupation.

Last July MC USA passed a resolution entitled, “Seeking Peace in Israel and Palestine: A Resolution for Mennonite Church USA,” to support justice and peace in Palestine and Israel. The resolution urges individuals and member churches to “avoid purchases and investments directly related to the military occupation of Palestinian territories.”

This short video will give you a better picture of all the ways Hewlett Packard knowingly and profitably participates in the oppression and military occupation of Palestine by Israel.

Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA) offers further information about the activities of Hewlett Packard and ways to mobilize your church to become HP-Free here. You can sign up as a church or as an individual.
Make Your Church (and Yourself) HP-Free Today!

Support Esther Koontz

MENNONITE PALESTINE ISRAEL NETWORK
Support Esther KoontzJonathan Brenneman is Partners in Peacemaking coordinator for Mennonite Church USA and gives invaluable support to MennoPIN. In a recent post on the MC USA website, Jonathan wrote:

“’I am a member of the Mennonite Church.’ This is how Kansas schoolteacher Esther Koontz opens her explanation on why she has been denied employment by the state. She is filing a law suit against the state of Kansas because a new Kansas law, HB 2351, demands that she sign an oath that she would not engage ‘in a boycott of Israel [or in territories controlled by Israel.]’

“Esther asserts that this infringes on her First Amendment rights. This case may have broad implications, as 22 states have similar laws.

“In her statement Esther explains that she began engaging in product boycotts after hearing from members of her congregation who went on a Mennonite Church USA ‘Come and See’ Learning Tour. And when the Delegate Assembly passed the Seeking Peace in Israel and Palestine resolution in July, her decision was confirmed.”

MC USA Executive Director, Ervin Stutzman also explains: “We support Esther Koontz, a member of a Mennonite Church USA congregation, as she lives out her peace witness inspired by the church’s tradition and teaching. We support her courageous witness for peace and justice for Palestinians and Israelis and oppose the state restricting her employment opportunities based solely on her sincere religious/political convictions.” 

Esther Koontz is the latest in a long line of Mennonite peace witnesses. May we support her, as she bears the cost for such a witness.

MennoPIN invites members across MC USA to join in support for Esther by sending her letters of encouragement. We encourage you to offer you words encouragement to Esther at SupportEsther@MennoniteUSA.org.

Thank you from the MennoPIN Steering Committee

Sabeel Wave of Prayer

Sabeel Wave of Prayer

We would like to highlight the Sabeel Wave of Prayer, updated weekly by the Sabeel Palestinian Christian organization. Reminding us that prayer is an essential part of peacemaking, these prayers address regional, timely concerns for Palestine-Israel from a Christ-centered perspective. The posts address regional, timely concerns for Palestine-Israel in a Christian perspective. Subscribe and join this community of prayer.

MennoPIN Update: October 2017

In This Issue

Mennonite Teacher Goes to Court in Kansas

MennoPIN Signs Letter Affirming Right to Boycott, Divest and Sanction Israel

MennoPIN Joins Cross Denominational Palestine Israel Network Leadership Group

Urge Congress to Support the End of the Gaza Blockade

HP-Free Churches

Read More

Prayer

 

Mennonite Teacher Goes to Court in Kansas

Esther Koontz is a math and science teacher in the Kansas public schools and a member of First Mennonite Church in Hutchison, Kansas. After being chosen to train other math teachers in the state, Esther was asked to sign a document stating that she does not boycott Israel. Based upon her conscience and the MC USA “Seeking Peace in Israel-Palestine” resolution, passed just last July in Orlando, she declined to sign the document and was disinvited from her appointment as a math trainer. With Esther’s full cooperation, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a federal lawsuit challenging a Kansas law requiring anyone contracted by the state “to not engage in boycotting Israel.” Watch how this case develops.

 

MennoPIN Signs Letter Affirming the Legal Right to Boycott, Divest and Sanction (BDS)

Affirming a long-standing use of nonviolent boycotts, divestments and sanctions as an effective tool to bring about social change, many denominations and organizations have signed on to a letter opposing anti-BDS legislation. The letter reads, in part, “We call on all Americans to join us and the ACLU in defending our First Amendment right to freedom of speech and on our state representatives and members of Congress to reject anti-BDS legislation as an infringement on the rights of American citizens.” Please contact your state and national representatives, encouraging them to oppose this kind of legislation.

 

MennoPIN Joins Cross Denominational Palestine Israel Network Leadership Group

On September 28, 2017, Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA) convened the first meeting of the “Cross Denominational Palestine Israel Network Leadership Group.” Omar Barghouti, a co-founder of the BDS movement, offered insights into BDS and strongly emphasized that “BDS is not a punishment; instead, it is a step toward healing.” The gathering clearly articulated the goal of BDS to be a nonviolent resistance campaign in support of basic rights for the Palestinian people, all affirmed by the Geneva Convention, including: (1) the right to political self-determination; (2) the right to equality and (3) the right to return and reparations in contrast to the occupation, apartheid and refugee status. The gathering also stressed the importance of grassroots movements, strength from the intersectionality of human rights groups, the treatment of the State of Israel as a human rights offender and the amplification of Palestinian voices. Further resources are listed below.

 

Urge Congress to Support the End of the Gaza Blockade

The blockade of Gaza by Israel has created a time of dire humanitarian crisis for Palestinians in the Gaza strip. Shortages of food, electricity and other necessities promise to make Gaza uninhabitable by2020. The factional infighting between the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and Hamas authorities in Gaza have also contributed to the crisis Gaza is facing. A recent reconciliation agreement between the two is an important first step towards change in Gaza and a needed move before blockade issues between Palestinian and Israeli can be addressed. Let’s nurture the seeds of hope that present themselves now. Please contact your members of Congress to tell them that the U.S. should offer full diplomatic and political support to this reconciliation process and should support an end to the Gaza blockade. For more information, see the link below.

 

HP-Free Churches

Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA) has called for U.S. churches to join them in a boycott of Hewlett Packard (HP) products. As one of the largest contractors for the U.S. defense industry, HP provides the registration and surveillance technology necessary for certain measures of state repression in Israel and the United States. FOSNA offers information about the activities of HP and how to mobilize your church at their website. Your congregation can also sign a pledge to indicate solidarity with the boycott movement.

 

Read More

Esther Koontz and the State of Kansas

Judith Butler on attempts to label Palestinian human rights activism as anti-Semitic

Resource page for HP Free Church Campaign

End the Gaza Blockade

 

Prayer

Hamas and Fatah have signed a landmark reconciliation deal in Cairo in a key step towards ending the ten-year-long rift. The deal will see administrative control of the Gaza Strip handed to a Fatah-backed unity government.

Lord, we thank you for this latest move towards peace and reconciliation among the Palestinian people. We pray that a united Palestinian government will be a step forward to our liberation from the Israeli occupation. Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer…

Sabeel Wave of Prayer, October 19, 2017

MennoPIN Press Release: Mennonite Church USA Votes Overwhelmingly For Israeli Occupation Investment Screen

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Rev. Tom Harder; 316-617-9755tlharder1@gmail.com

Mennonite Church USA Votes Overwhelmingly for Israeli Occupation Investment Screen
6 July 2017

ORLANDO, Fla. – The Mennonite Palestine Israel Network (MennoPIN) welcomes the successful passage of the “Seeking Peace in Israel and Palestine” resolution by Mennonite Church USA (MCUSA) at its biennial convention in Orlando, FL, today. MCUSA delegates voted nearly unanimously to create an investment screen for the purpose of “withdrawing investments from companies that are profiting from the occupation.” The resolution was approved overwhelmingly, with approximately 98% of the 548 voters supporting it.

The comprehensive resolution lifts up the rights of Palestinian refugees, citizens of Israel, and those living under occupation, declaring the denomination’s opposition to Israel’s 50-year-old military rule over Palestinians in the occupied territories. The resolution also urges church agencies and members to review their own investments, to boycott products associated with the occupation or produced in Israeli settlements built on occupied Palestinian land in violation of international law and longstanding official US policy, and to advocate for an end to U.S. military aid and arms sales in the Middle East.

“This resolution is a long overdue response to the Palestinian Christian call to the global church,” said Joy Lapp, Professor of Religion at Iowa Wesleyan University and one of the founders of MennoPIN. “Today we stand in solidarity with their courageous and nonviolent efforts for justice and equality.”

The resolution focuses on ways Mennonites have been involved in harms against both Palestinians and Jews, and names concrete steps to address those harms. It addresses the ongoing reality of anti-Semitism around the world, and the extent to which Mennonites in the U.S. are complicit in Jewish suffering historically, currently, and theologically. Church members are encouraged to build relationships with Palestinian-American, Muslim and Jewish communities in the United States.

Mennonite Church USA joins with the Presbyterian Church (USA), United Methodist Church, United Church of Christ, Quakers, Unitarian Universalists, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and others who have taken economic action in recent years to support justice for Palestinians.

MennoPIN looks forward to working with denominational staff and members to robustly implement the resolution in the years ahead.

The Mennonite Palestine Israel Network (MennoPIN) is a grassroots network of Mennonites working for peace with justice in Palestine-Israel.


Mennonite Palestine-Israel Network
mennopin@gmail.com | mennopin.org | facebook.com/mennopin | twitter.com/mennopin

Steering Committee:
Tom Harder (Lorraine Avenue Mennonite Church, Wichita, KS)
Joy Lapp (Pleasant View Mennonite Church, Mt Pleasant, IA)
Rachelle Lyndaker Schlabach (Peace Fellowship Church, Washington, DC)
Timothy Seidel (Community Mennonite Church, Lancaster, PA)

MennoPIN Update: June 2017

In This Issue
June 20 Webinar
Countdown to Orlando
Vote for the New Steering Committee
Palestine Portal
HP-Free Churches
Read More
Prayer

June 20 Webinar on the “Seeking Peace in Israel-Palestine” Resolution
Andre Gingrich Stoner will be leading a webinar on June 20, 8:00 PM Eastern, in which he will expound upon the peace resolution to be presented at Orlando 2017. If you would like to join the webinar, click here to indicate your interest and receive viewing information.

Countdown to Orlando
It’s almost time for the Orlando convention! As we count down, please be sure to remind your congregational delegate(s) to vote for the Palestine-Israel resolution. We are also still compiling the list of endorsing congregations, so please let us know if we can list your congregation.

If you will be in Orlando and would be willing to help staff the MennoPIN booth, please email mennopin@gmail.com. In addition, there will be lots of seminars focused on Palestine-Israel, a reception on Wednesday evening (July 5) and MennoPIN’s biennial meeting on Friday evening.

Remember to Vote for the New Steering Committee
Yesterday you should have received an email with instructions on how to vote for the newly-nominated Steering Committee of MennoPIN. Please take time to register your vote online by June 20.

Palestine Portal
Check out a great new ecumenical resource, Palestine Portal. This new hub provides a centralized network of resources on church advocacy, allied organizations, current programs, and much more. Additionally, the site provides ways for you to connect with local and international communities that are likewise concerned about human rights abuses in Palestine. Palestine Portal also supports MennoPIN and other church newsletters in their weekly news feed.

HP-Free Churches
Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA) has called for U.S. churches to join them in a boycott of Hewlett Packard (HP) products. As one of the largest contractors for the U.S. defense industry, HP provides the registration and surveillance technology necessary for certain measures of state repression in Israel and the United States. FOSNA offers information about the activities of HP and how to mobilize your church at their website. Your congregation can also sign a pledge to indicate solidarity with the boycott movement.

Read More
Goshen Student Speaks on Capitol Hill
Action Alert: Stand With Issa Amro
Hope & Sumud – 50 Years of Israeli Military Occupation (MCC Palestine blog)
UN Human Rights Chief Calls for End to Israel’s Occupation of Palestine
The Past 50 Years of Israeli Occupation. And the Next.

Prayer
“2017 marks many anniversaries in the history of Palestine, including the 50th anniversary of the beginning of Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip.

Lord, this week we lament 50 years of occupation, which gave birth to so much injustice, suffering, and dispossession for the Palestinian people. We pray that 2017, this fiftieth year, will be a biblical year of Jubilee, a year in which we proclaim liberty to our land and all its inhabitants. Lord, we cry out to you that this year will be a time to speak truth to power, a time to break the silence surrounding injustice, a year for peace, a year for Palestine.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer…”

From Sabeel’s June 8 Wave of Prayer


Mennonite Palestine-Israel Network
mennopin@gmail.com | mennopin.org | facebook.com/mennopin | twitter.com/mennopin

Steering Committee:
Tom Harder (Lorraine Avenue Mennonite Church, Wichita, KS)
Joy Lapp (Pleasant View Mennonite Church, Mt Pleasant, IA)
Rachelle Lyndaker Schlabach (Peace Fellowship Church, Washington, DC)
Timothy Seidel (Community Mennonite Church, Lancaster, PA)

MennoPIN Update: May 2017

In This Issue
Gearing Up for Orlando
Nominations and Election Process
Resources Now Available in Spanish
Speaking Tour Continues
#Nakba69
Read More
Prayer

Gearing Up for Orlando
We’re continuing to prepare for the Mennonite Church USA convention this summer in Orlando. There’s lots going on! In addition, of course, to delegates voting on the Israel-Palestine resolution, there will be a full slate of Israel-Palestine workshops. MennoPIN is joining with several like-minded groups to sponsor a booth in the exhibit hall.

Wednesday evening there will be a “Come and See” reception, open to anyone wanting to learn more about Israel-Palestine, and Friday evening MennoPIN will hold our biennial working meeting. We hope to see you at all of these events!

Nominations and Election Process
In recent updates, we’ve mentioned that the Steering Committee has gone through some transitions. We’re making one last call for nominations to our Steering Committee. If you are interested, or would like to nominate someone else, please send an email to mennopin@gmail.com noting the name and contact info, congregation, and a brief description of the individual’s interest and qualifications by no later than this Friday May 19. Then, look for an electronic ballot of names in your inbox in early June, and at our meeting in Orlando we’ll introduce the new members of our Steering Committee.

Resources Now Available in Spanish
We’re excited to announce that the Kairos Palestine study guide produced by MennoPIN is now available in Spanish, as well as in English. In addition, the text of the resolution on Israel-Palestine to be considered this summer is available in both Spanish and English.

Speaking Tour Continues
The Jewish and Palestinian Voices for Peace tour wraps up with a few more events later this month, featuring Jonathan Kuttab and local representatives of Jewish Voice for Peace.

#Nakba69
Today, May 15, is remembered by Palestinians all over the world as “Nakba Day.” Nakba is the Arabic word for “catastrophe” and refers to the experience of Palestinians during the 1948 war, during which between 750,000 and 900,000 Palestinians were dispossessed and displaced, and over 500 Palestinian villages were destroyed. Palestinian refugees from the 1948 war, as well as the 1967 war, still wait–many in refugee camps throughout the Middle East–holding out for their right to return. As we remember and advocate for Palestinian refugees’ right to return, check out this new infographic illustrating that return is possible. To learn more, check out the work of organizations like Zochrot, Badil, and De-Colonizer as well as this educational resource from Jewish Voice for Peace.

Read More
Why I Support the Palestinian Right of Return by Rabbi Brant Rosen, who will be joining us at Orlando 2017 this summer.
New U.S. Bill Would Punish Settlement Boycotters.
Palestinians mark 69th ‘Nakba’ anniversary with rallies.
Two new resources on Gaza: Gaza Unlocked and Obliterated Families.

Prayer
“Last week, thousands of people gathered in Nelson Mandela Square in Ramallah to show support for the Palestinian prisoner hunger strikers. Nelson Mandela is viewed internationally as an icon against racism and an advocate for human rights. This week, many Palestinians and Internationals, including Church leaders and activists, plan to join a three day hunger strike as a show of solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners’ demands.

Lord, we continue to pray for the steadfastness of the Palestinian prisoners as they hunger for their rightful demands. We also pray for our people not to be led into the temptation of arms and continue the commitment to nonviolent resistance.
Lord in your mercy…”

–From Sabeel’s May 11 Wave of Prayer

Mennonite Palestine-Israel Network
mennopin@gmail.com | mennopin.org | facebook.com/mennopin | twitter.com/mennopin

Steering Committee:
Tom Harder (Lorraine Avenue Mennonite Church, Wichita, KS)
Joy Lapp (Pleasant View Mennonite Church, Mt Pleasant, IA)
Rachelle Lyndaker Schlabach (Peace Fellowship Church, Washington, DC)
Timothy Seidel (Community Mennonite Church, Lancaster, PA)