The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


No Palestinian persecution

Relationship between Christians, Muslims a good example for the world

l was shocked to read "What next for Palestinian Christians?"(December, p. 41), which foresees persecution of Palestinian Christians. From my perspective as president of the Evangelical Luthe ran Synod in Jordan and Palestine, I see the relationship between Palestinian Christians and Muslims as an exemplary paradigm for the whole world. Palestinian Christians consider themselves to be part and parcel of the Palestinian nation. They do not have a "minority complex," but consider themselves to be like "leaven in the dough." History proves the leading role of Palestinian Christians in many areas of Palestinian society. Though Islamic fundamentalism does exist in the country, it is no danger to Pa lestinian Christians. The Islamic fundamentalists, Hamas or others are political movements. One should not view Islam as the second evil after Communism. We have lived together for 16 centuries. Palestinian Christians have survived many governments, rules , mandates and occupations, but they have always lived in dignity and contributed a great deal to their society. The Lutheran church in the country initiated and is heavily involved in dialogue with both Muslims and Jews. It is our conviction that the con flict in Palestine/Israel is not religious but political.

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