INTERFAITH STATEMENT FROM THE MAHONING VALLEY IN OHIO ON THE PRESIDENT'S ACTIONS REGARDING THE HOLY CITY*
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem (Psalm 122:6)
O Jerusalem, Jerusalem...how often I have longed to gather your children together as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing (Matthew 23:37)
Who did take His Servant for a Journey by night from the Sacred Mosque to the Farthest Mosque, whose precincts We did bless - in order that We might show him some of Our signs: for He is the One Who heareth and seeth [all things] (Surah 17:1)
As People of the Book and members of Abrahamic faiths, we reaffirm our covenantal bonds and common commitment to peace and justice in God's world, particularly in the Holy Land.
Whether hailed as Jerusalem (city of peace) or al-Quds (the abode of holiness), we recognize the unique status and pivotal destiny of this Holy City as well as its vital significance as a sacred space for Jews, Christians and Muslims.
As such, we faithfully and firmly reject any unilateral action by any group or individual to undermine its sacred standing and violate its unique status as an international and interfaith city of peace.
We regard President Trump's recent designation of occupied Jerusalem as the capital of Israel as a grave and dangerous error, one that brazenly violates international law and openly reverses some seven decades of established American policy. The provocative and offensive nature of that unilateral proclamation is greatly aggravated by his misguided decision to move the US embassy to the Holy City and thereby pre-empt any negotiated settlement on its final status.
We view these reckless and alarming actions by our government with grave concern, and call upon the Trump Administration to immediately withdraw them and fully recognize the acute political and religious sensitivity of the status of Jerusalem al-Quds in any final and sustainable peace settlement in the Holy Land and beyond.
*composed by Rev. Dr. Lange; signed on Jan. 24 by scores of clergy and laity representing Abrahamic faiths; and sent to the White House in February. There was no response.