ACREC ‘applauds’ General Assembly divestment vote

Racial ethnic advocacy panel calls action ‘light onto nations’

September 22, 2014


The Advocacy Committee for Racial Ethnic Concerns (ACREC) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has issued an open letter to General Assembly Moderator Heath Rada, Stated Clerk Gradye Parsons and Presbyterian Mission Agency Executive Director Linda Valentine “applauding” the recent General Assembly’s decision to divest from three U.S. companies it determined “is profiting from the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territory.

The hotly-debated measure – which passed by a vote of 310-303 – calls for divestment from Hewlett-Packard, Caterpillar and Motorola Solutions. It has been widely misinterpreted as constituting divestment from Israel itself – a charge refuted by both the General Assembly itself and by denominational leaders since the mid-June vote by the 221st General Assembly in Detroit.

The full text of the ACREC letter:

12 September 2014

RE: Open Letter Regarding the 221st General Assembly (2014) Divestment Action

It is with deep concern that we, the members of the Advocacy Committee for Racial Ethnic Concerns, have recognized Israel’s practices and actions against the Palestinian people, both Christians and Muslims, and Israel’s physical changes to the land and infrastructure of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and its blockade and aerial bombardment of the Gaza Strip constitute (as defined by the 2002 Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (RSICC))elements of crimes against humanity.

We, therefore, applaud the 221st General Assembly’s (2014) action to divest from U. S. companies that profit from the illegal occupation of Palestinian territories.

This action was in accord with the resolution (11-11) to recognize the prophetic call in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), passed by the 220th General Assembly (2012) which recognizes “. . . with joy and thanks to God the historic stance of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in pursuit of justice as a central mandate of our church, a mandate that calls us to upholdthe need to be faithfully partisan in situations of injustice and to speak truth to power,wherever necessary as we pursue justice, without fear of retribution or the delay of deflection.”

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) call for the boycott of products made in illegal Israeli coloniesand the action of divestment from companies profiting from the occupation of Palestinian territories are but a small step in worldwide recognition that things must change in Palestine/Israel. The PC(USA) General Assembly actions are a light onto nations.

ACREC Members:
Rev. Raafat Zaki, ACREC Chair, National Middle Eastern Presbyterian Caucus Chair and
Representative to ACREC (Grace Presbytery)
Elder Debra L. Battise-Kleinman, CRE, ACREC Vice-Chair, Native American Coordinating
Committee Chair (New Covenant Presbytery)
Rev. Samson Tso, ACREC Secretary, National Asian Presbyterian Caucus Representative to
ACREC (New York City Presbytery)
Rev. James R. Ephraim, Jr. (The Presbytery of Sheppards and Lapsley)
Rev. Dr. David Esterline (Blackhawk Presbytery)
Elder Nahida Halaby Gordon (Muskingum Valley Presbytery)
Pastor Kevin Johnson, ACSWP liaison to ACREC (Presbytery of Detroit)
Pastor Mark S. Jones, Sr., CRE, National Black Presbyterian Caucus Representative to ACREC
(Presbytery of the Pacific)
Rev. Joo H. Kim (Twin Cities Presbytery)
Rev. Gwendolyn D. Magby (Tropical Florida Presbytery)
Elder Ricardo Moreno, National Presbyterian Hispanic Latino Caucus Representative to
ACREC (San Gabriel Presbytery)
Rev. Lilia Ramirez-Jimenez (Presbytery of the Palisades)

  1. I think this view is totally biased. If you were really concerned there are fifty other nations that you should apply the same restriction to. China takes land as it wishes and does not even recognize "private property" Think about all the middle east countries that are killing Christian. Why don't we apply the same actions against them. Common sense says that is you were truly worried about such matter it would be hard to find an investment that could meet such a criteria left in the United States.

    by lyle W. Hughart

    September 1, 2015

  2. This is not a religious stand, it is a political stand. My God was not political, did not use his power to intimidate or direct believers to his way of thinking. I would not be surprised if those with your church affiliation lose their jobs do to ignorance and arrogance of this subject. It will become obvious in the near future that those associated with Islam in anyway will suffer the great lose. God will return and His covenant with Christians will prevail.

    by Jon Thomas

    October 14, 2014

  3. It appears that the leadership of this once great denomination has decided to conform Christianity to its worldview. If you are driving members away from your church, you are doing it wrong.

    by Todd Capitano

    October 2, 2014

  4. I certainly hope all these happy people offset the unhappy and disaffected Presbyterian contributors who are less than delighted. LSL

    by Louis S. Lunardini

    September 23, 2014

  5. ACREC is just another bunch of anti-semites who lack a clear view of the savagery Hamas unleashed on Isreal and their own people. The General Assemnbly has done many dumb things over the years but this hypucritical "divestment" is surley the worst.

    by David Mowbray

    September 23, 2014