CCJ is com­mit­ted to di­a­logue

The Church of England - - CHURCH OF ENGALND -

Sir, Jeremy Moodey (Let­ter, 10 Fe­bru­ary) makes a host of crit­i­cisms of CCJ. May I limit my re­sponse to those di­rected at me? He says I go ‘off-piste’ when, in my ar­ti­cle on Jewish-Chris­tian re­la­tions, I ac­cuse con­tem­po­rary Chris­tians in the UK of glo­ri­fy­ing in Jewish pow­er­less­ness or wish­ing to push the Zion­ist en­tity into the Mediter­ranean. My only de­fence is that I did no such thing. Rather I said: ‘his­tor­i­cally [sic] Chris­tians have of­ten glo­ried in Jewish pow­er­less­ness’. Does Mr Moodey deny that whole strand of Chris­tian think­ing, go­ing back to Saint Au­gus­tine?

Again I care­fully said that ‘oth­ers’ [sic] call for the re­moval of the Zion­ist or Jewish en­tity, us­ing the lan­guage of vi­o­lence. Again, does Mr Moodey deny that this rhetoric is out there, from Ha­mas and Iran, to men­tion only the most ob­vi­ous sources? I re­spect­fully sug­gest that Mr Moodey’s let­ter is a text­book case of what can hap­pen when one’s ex­pec­ta­tion of what the other must be say­ing - be­cause they are on ‘the other side’ - wins out over care­ful at­ten­tion to what is ac­tu­ally said. It is down­hill all the way!

This is sad, and brings no ben­e­fit ei­ther to Is­raelis or Pales­tini­ans. CCJ is a fal­li­ble hu­man or­gan­i­sa­tion – just as is Em­brace the Mid­dle East - but our ori­en­ta­tion is clear: we are com­mit­ted to real di­a­logue where all sides are heard and re­spected, on Is­raelPales­tine, and on the many other di­a­log­i­cal mat­ters nearer to home. The Rev Pa­trick Mor­row, Pro­gramme Man­ager The Coun­cil of Chris­tians and Jews Lon­don, EC4

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