Statement on Jerusalem (WCC, CC, 1974)
WCC Central Committee – Berlin [W] (Germany)

The Central Committee affirms that, in order to reach a satisfactory position regarding Jerusalem, the following facts should be taken into account:

1.         Jerusalem is a Holy City for three monotheistic religions: Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The tendency to minimize Jerusalem’s importance for any of these three religions should be avoided.

2.         Its importance for Christianity is reflected in the following statement of the Executive Committee of the WCC at Bad Saarow (February 1974): “Christian Holy Places in Jerusalem and neighbouring areas belong to the greatest extent to member churches of the WCC, specifically the Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Churches, and are also of concern to other Christians.” But the question of Jerusalem is not only a matter of protection of Holy Places, it is organically linked with living faiths and communities of people in the Holy City. Any proposed solution as to the future of the Holy Places in Jerusalem should take into account the legitimate rights of the churches most directly concerned.

3.         Any solution on Jerusalem should take into account the rights and needs of the indigenous peoples of the Holy City.

4.         We are of the opinion that matters related to jurisdiction over Jerusalem will only find their lasting solution within the context of the settlement of the conflict in its totality. The Central Committee recommends that the above should be worked out with member churches, initially those churches most directly concerned, and in consultation with the Roman Catholic Church. These issues should also become subjects for dialogue with Jewish and Muslim participants.

1974, August 11-18 | WCC –CENTRAL COMMITTEE – Berlin [W] (Germany)