Church Resolutions & Actions


Further information:
Some information from this list can be found at the website of US Campaign for Palestinian Rights: https://uscpr.org/usbdsvictories/

See links for some church resolutions and associated resources at our Divestment page
See FOSNA’s timeline for Church Divestment Wins here

See also: United Nations resolutions and other legal instruments at our International Law page.

Please help us build this collection by submitting news and/or texts of resolutions and actions: i[email protected].

2020

Unitarian Universalists Commit to Vigorous Use of Investor Power for Human Rights

On June 26, 2020 delegates to the virtually held General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) voted to adopt the Business Resolution “Embodying Human Rights in Our Investment Decisions”. The vote in support of the resolution was overwhelming with 95% of the delegates voting for adoption.

Actions mandated in this church legislation include: “To cease purchasing shares in corporations that are consistently, knowingly, and directly complicit in egregious human rights violations and violations of international law, and to divest from shares directly held in such corporations” Curtis Bell, President of Unitarian Universalists for Justice in the Middle East said: “UUJME is pleased that the ‘Whereas’ statements of the resolution place the human rights of Palestinians squarely among the human rights that all human beings share – Black people, people of color, Indigenous people, LGBTQI people, disabled people, Uighurs, prisoners, refugees, religious minorities and others.”
Learn more about this resolution:
https://uujme.org/press-release-uua-2020-general-assembly-adopts-business-resolution-on-investing-in-accord-with-human-rights-with-95-vote/
See the text of the resolution:
https://www.uua.org/sites/live-new.uua.org/files/2020_ga_business_w_amendments.pdf


2019

ELCA Churchwide Assembly Passes Assembly Actions Related to Israel and Palestine

(Excerpts from report by Peace Not Walls of the ELCA)

On August 6, 2019, at the ELCA’s 2019 Churchwide Assembly in Milwaukee, the assembly approved by 96% (YES-829; NO-33) four Assembly Actions related to Israel and Palestine (the memorials were presented en bloc with other memorials).

The Assembly Actions deal with the human rights social investment screen, the detention of Palestinian children by Israel, funding for Augusta Victoria Hospital, and continuing to listen to various perspectives on the conflict. The Assembly Actions include urgent requests for advocacy related to the Lutheran World Federation’s Augusta Victoria Hospital and the military detention of Palestinian children by Israel. The Peace Not Walls team will continue to provide resources for education and advocacy related to both.

The Assembly Action titled “Category B1: Just Peace” “commend[s] and encourage[s] Portico Benefit Services to continue its implementation of the human rights social criteria investment screen as it relates to investments in Israel and Palestine.” This relates to the Churchwide Assembly Action in 2016 which directed “the ELCA’s Corporate Social Responsibility review team to develop a human rights social criteria investment screen based on the social teachings of this church and, in the case of Israel and Palestine, specifically based on the concerns raised in the ELCA Middle East Strategy; …” [CA16.06.31].
…..
The Assembly Action titled “Category B2: Palestine (No Way to Treat a Child)” urges the ELCA to advocate to “ensure that U.S. taxpayer funds not support military detention, interrogation, abuse or ill-treatment of Palestinian children” and create resources so congregations can “learn more about the lives of Palestinian children and how Israel is spending U.S. military assistance to detain Palestinian children.”
…..
The Assembly Action titled “Category B3: Augusta Victoria Hospital” requests the ELCA to advocate for “all relevant legislators to release FY2018 funding intended by Congress to support the East Jerusalem hospitals in FY2018, and continue funding at previous levels until the Israeli/Palestinian conflict is resolved.” It also requests the ELCA to advocate for the “applicable legislators to restore FY 2018 funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) and beyond, and continue funding at previous levels until the Israeli/Palestinian conflict is resolved.”
…..
The Assembly Action titled “Category B4: Engagement in the Holy Land” reaffirmed “that the ELCA, in its various expressions, continue to listen to the voices of persons holding various perspectives on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
The ELCA’s 2005 Churchwide Strategy for Engagement in Israel and Palestine includes, in its section on awareness building, a call “to listen to the voices of Palestinians and Israelis through visits to the region in coordination with local partners.”
…..
Get more details about all these Assembly Actions in the full report.
See it here online: https://blogs.elca.org/peacenotwalls/elca-churchwide-assembly-passes-assembly-actions-related-to-israel-and-palestine/
Download the report
Download the document with the full text of these actions, beginning on Page 26


2018

July 2018 – At General Convention 2018, the Episcopal Church adopts an investment screen that will bar companies involved in Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights
Resolution B016, “Adopt ELCA Action on Israel,”  calls for church to join with Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA) by directing the Committee on Corporate Social Responsibility (CCSR) to develop criteria for Israel/Palestine based on a human rights investment screen, together with past actions of General Convention and Executive Council. It also calls to increase positive investment in Palestine and encourages CCSR to engage in shareholder advocacy regarding human rights in Israel and the occupied territories.
See the USCPR report: https://uscpr.org/episcopaliandivestment/
See the resolution: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/B016?house=hd&lang=en  Original Version: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/B016/original_text?house=hd&lang=en

The Episcopal Church has also adopted the following excellent resolutions:
B003: On the Status of Jerusalem

Affirms Jerusalem as shared capital of State of Israel and future Palestinian State. Supports respect for civil rights & religious interests of Christians, Muslims & Jews. Calls for free & secure access to holy sites. opposes Trump’s move of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. See it: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/B003?house=hd&lang=en  Original version: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/B003/original_text?house=hd&lang=en

B021: Support Aid to Palestinian Refugees
Calls on the US government to reinstate funding to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) See it: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/B021?house=hd&lang=en  Original Version: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/B021/original_text?house=hd&lang=en

C038: Safeguard the Rights of Palestinian Children
Seeks assurances from Israel and Palestinian Authority leaders that existing policies provide all rights & protections for children under18, adhering to Article 37 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. See it: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/C038?house=hd&lang=en  Original version: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/C038/original_text?house=hd&lang=en

D018: Negotiating the Israeli Palestinian Conflict
Recognizes the right of Israelis & Palestinians to self-determination, full human & civil rights, with commitment to a negotiated settlement by both parties, in whatever agreed upon political form that may take. See it: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/D018?house=hd&lang=en  Original version: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/D018/original_text?house=hd&lang=en

D027: Pursuing Justice in Gaza
Calls for to U.S. to reinstate full funding for UNRWA to the 5 million Palestinian refugees in Gaza and camps around Middle East. Condemns the use of live fire by Israeli forces against unarmed civilians in Gaza and urges compliance with Leahy Amendment regarding U.S. military aid to Israel. See it: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/D027?house=hd&lang=en  Original version: https://www.vbinder.net/resolutions/D027/original_text?house=hd&lang=en


2017

July 2017 – United Church of Christ votes to support Palestinian children in Israeli military detention
79% of delegates at the 31st General Synod of the UCC  voted for a resolution which calls on the State of Israel to guarantee basic due process rights and exercise an absolute prohibition against torture and ill-treatment of detained Palestinian children. Read the text of the resolution

July 2017 – Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) nearly unanimously adopts a resolution addressing the rights of Palestinian children and youth living under Israeli military occupation that matches the UCC resolution above.

July 2017 – Mennonite Church USA Votes Overwhelmingly For Israeli Occupation Investment Screen
Roughly 98% of delegates at Mennonite Church USA biennial convention adopt “Seeking Peace in Israel and Palestine” to create an investment screen for the purpose of “withdrawing investments from companies that are profiting from the occupation.”  Read the text of the resolution

July 2017 – Disciples of Christ Affirm Rights of Palestinian Children and Youth
The General Assembly of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) adopted a resolution nearly unanimously, addressing the rights of Palestinian children and youth living under Israeli military occupation.
Read the text of the resolution

May-June 2017 – United Methodists in U.S. Defend the Right to Boycott and Divest
23 Resolutions on Israel/Palestine in 15 regional church bodies also oppose the abuse of Palestinian children living under occupation, support the international HP Boycott, call for responsible travel in the Holy Land by church members including engagement with Palestinian Christians, encourage investment in new church fund that excludes key occupation-complicit companies, and more.  Read the press release
Read the text of resolutions

February 2017 – 15 Christian Denominations, Agencies and Organizations Send Briefing to Congress: “Toward Peace, Justice, and Equality in Israel and Palestine”
Briefing paper calls on U.S. policy makers to: urge Israel to end the occupation of Palestinian territories, apply the Leahy Law and other mechanisms to the proper use of U.S. foreign aid, protect human rights groups and defenders, urge both Israelis and Palestinians to refrain from violence, and protect the rights of American citizens engaging in BDS actions. Read the briefing paper


2016

August 2016 – Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Overwhelmingly Passes Investment Screen
http://isaiah58.info/c-1-passes-by-overwhelming-majority/
In overwhelming vote, leading Lutheran branch calls on US to cut off aid to Israel
http://mondoweiss.net/2016/08/lutherans-say-cut-off-aid-toisrael/
Find text of resolutions:    http://isaiah58.info/resolutions/

April 2016 – Alliance of Baptists Divests from Companies Profiting from Israel’s Occupation of Palestinian Land
Alliance of Baptists Affirm Statement on BDS
http://allianceofbaptists.org/NewsAndEvents/detail/alliance-of-baptists-affirm-statement-on-bds
Download the statement

April 2016 – Unitarian Universalists Divest from Companies Profiting from Israel’s Occupation
http://mondoweiss.net/2016/04/unitarian-universalists-divest-from-companies-profiting-from-israels-occupation/

March 2016 – Catholic Conference of Major Superiors of Men Calls for Boycott of Illegal Settlements
https://cmsm.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/03-30-16_MediaRelease-BoycottIllegalSettlements.pdf
Download the statement

January 2016 – United Methodist Church Excludes Top 5 Israeli Banks for Involvement in Illegal Settlements
U.S. Church Puts 5 Banks From Israel on a Blacklist
https://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/13/world/middleeast/us-church-puts-5-banks-from-israel-on-a-blacklist.html?_r=0


2015

June 2015 – United Church of Christ General Synod votes overwhelmingly to boycott and divest from Israeli occupation
United Church of Christ Approves Divestment to Aid Palestinians
https://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/01/us/united-church-of-christ-to-divest-israel-to-aid-palestinians.html
Download the resolution

June 2015 – National Council of Fellowship of Reconciliation Unanimously Endorses BDS
https://www.facebook.com/corvallisalbanypalsolidarity/posts/10208140893584872


2014

Divestment resolution is adopted at General Assembly, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), June 2014

June 20, 2014 – Presbyterian Church (USA) General Assembly divests from companies involved in Israeli occupation
Presbyterians Vote to Divest Holdings to Pressure Israel
https://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/21/us/presbyterians-debating-israeli-occupation-vote-to-divest-holdings.html
Download the resolution

June 12, 2014 – United Methodist Church divests from G4S in response to role in Israeli prisons
Methodist Church Pension Board Links Divestment to Firm’s Role in Israeli Prisons
https://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/16/us/methodist-church-group-links-divestment-move-to-israel-and-a-firms-prison-role.html

March 2014 – United Methodist Church General Board of Church and Society Boycotts Sodastream
Social justice agency issues call to boycott SodaStream
https://umc-gbcs.org/press-releases/social-justice-agency-issues-call-to-boycott-sodastream
Download the Call to Boycott


2013

July 2013 –The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) adopts a resolution “Encouraging a Fuller Experience of Israel-Palestine” which provides recommendations for church members who visit the Holy Land.  Read the text of the resolution

March 2013 – Mennonite Central Committee unanimously adopts AFSC 29-company no-buy list for divestment
MCC U.S. board acts for peace through its investments
https://mcc.org/stories/mcc-us-board-acts-peace-through-its-investments


2012 (and following)

18 Victories spanning 2012 through 2015 – 18 Quaker Meetings Across 15 States Endorse Boycott, Divestment or Both
Breakthrough! Quakers Spanning 3 US States Call For Boycott & Divestment
https://bdsmovement.net/news/breakthrough-quakers-spanning-3-us-states-call-boycott-divestment
Download a compilation of decisions from many Quaker meetings
Download a list of meetings supporting boycott or divestment from the Israeli occupation

September 2012 – Quaker Friends Fiduciary Corporation divests from HP, Veolia
Quaker socially responsible investment fund divests $390,000 from Hewlett-Packard, Veolia
https://electronicintifada.net/blogs/nora-barrows-friedman/quaker-socially-responsible-investment-fund-divests-390000-hewlett

July 2012 – Presbyterian Church (USA) General Assembly votes to boycott settlement products
Palestinian civil society welcomes Presbyterian Church (USA) Israel boycott resolution
https://bdsmovement.net/news/palestinian-civil-society-welcomes-presbyterian-church-usa-israel-boycott-resolution
Download the resolution

Delegate holds a map of Israeli encroachment of the West Bank as he presents a minority report at the UMC General Conference 2012, Tampa, Florida.

May 2012 – United Methodist Church General Conference votes to boycott settlement products
Opposition to Israeli Settlements in Palestinian Land (#6111, 2012 UMC Book of Resolutions):
Download the resolution

May 2012 –  Friends Fiduciary Corporation (Quaker) divests from Caterpillar
http://northsidefriends.org/print.php?news.159


2011 and earlier

November 2011 – American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) adopts no-buy list of 29 companies complicit in Israeli occupation
https://www.afsc.org/document/israel-palestine-no-buy-list
Download the No-Buy List

June 2010 – Presbyterian Church (USA) General Assembly calls for U.S. Government to place sanctions on military assistance to Israel

March 2008 – American Friends Service Committee approves Israel-Palestine Investment Screen

October 2007 – National Coalition of American Nuns Publicly Urges Boycott of Caterpillar

Summer 2005 – United Church of Christ General Synod calls for the use of Economic Leverage — including ending military aid and divestment — to promote peace in Middle East.


2005 through 2015

18 United Methodist Church Annual Conferences, representing thousands of churches and hundreds of thousands of members, adopt 30 resolutions and statements calling for divestment; several divest their own conference funds
https://www.kairosresponse.org/pr_acs_divestment_2015.html  
and  https://www.kairosresponse.org/umkr_pr_ac_action2013.html
Find text of some of these resolutions at: https://www.umhltf.org/UMC_Annual_Conf_Resolutions.html