Brethren Leader at White House Meeting on Israel and Palestine

Church of the Brethren Newsline
July 1, 2010

Church of the Brethren general secretary Stan Noffsinger today attended a meeting at the White House with a group of church leaders who were invited to discuss Israel and Palestine with Denis McDonough, National Security Council Chief of Staff to President Obama.

Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP) helped organize the meeting and Noffsinger was specifically asked to take part as a head of communion by CMEP executive director Warren Clark.

“This meeting is most timely as Israeli officials are scheduled next week to meet with the President,” Noffsinger commented by e-mail. The meeting was expected to allow the church leaders an opportunity to hear about progress the US administration is making in moving parties toward an agreement to end conflict in the area, including a freeze on new Israeli construction in east Jerusalem and the West Bank, Noffsinger said.

Noffsinger was to speak today at Standing Committee meetings of district representatives in Pittsburgh, Pa. However, after consulting with the Annual Conference officers and executive committee of the Mission and Ministry Board, it was decided the White House meeting “was an important opportunity for the voice of the Church of the Brethren to be heard,” Noffsinger said. “As Brother Fred (Swartz, Annual Conference secretary) put it in his response to my inquiry, ‘The Brethren have a story to tell. We’d better take every prime opportunity to tell it! So… go tell it on the Mountain!’”

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