Presbyterian Interfaith Office Issues Statement Calling for Vigilance Against Anti-Jewish Bias
The Interfaith Relations Office of the Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A. has issued a statement, dated May 2008, calling for vigilance against anti-Jewish ideas and bias. "We Presbyterians," it states, "aspire to build positive and respectful relations with our neighbors in the Jewish community, based on an honest exploration of the close ties between our two faith traditions and our shared concerns for peace and justice." However, it notes, "we are aware and do confess that anti-Jewish attitudes can be found among us."
The statement follows on several years of Presbyterian-Jewish discussions following the adoption by the church's General Assembly of resolutions about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that proved troubling to Jews, especially concerning "selective divestment" from corporations doing business in Israel. The new statement notes that these issues are "complex and difficult," and that "It does not help to import stereotypes, anti-Jewish motifs or classic ideas of Christian anti-Jewish theology into our discussions." It pledges to examine Presbyterian thinking, theology, and advocacy to guard against such biases.