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Delegates fail to act on Israel-Palestine resolution

7.1. 2015 Written By: Gordon Houser

From left: Patty Shelly, Elizabeth Soto Albrecht, Ervin Stutzman during the delegate assembly. Photo by Vada Snider.

After much discussion in table groups and from the microphone, delegates seemed evenly divided about whether or not to pass a resolution on divesting from “from corporations known to be profiting from the occupation and/or destruction of life and property in Israel-Palestine.”

Toward the end of the afternoon delegate session on July 1, delegates voted on a motion to table the resolution for two years.

Results of that vote were not available when the session ended.

Earlier, in the morning session, delegates passed a resolution on endless warfare—but not before passing an amendment that sought to include more action in a resolution that some felt was too weak.

The amendment “calls for an immediate ban on research, development, production and deployment of robotic and autonomous weapons, including military drones, and associated artificial intelligence technologies—placing them in the same category as chemical and biological weapons.”

This passed by a wide margin of the 868 delegates, with only 20-25 opposed.

Clyde Kratz of Virginia Mennonite Conference introduced a resolution from 10 individuals and three area conferences to accept the apology of the Executive Board that came in a pastoral letter released April 8.

Part of the confession in that letter said: “We acknowledge we have failed to equip our church to discern Christian faithfulness in regard to same-sex relationships, which has resulted in a breakdown of trust and love.”

Delegates voted overwhelmingly to offer forgiveness.

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