Northern Baptist State Conventions (ABCUSA)
Wisconsin Baptist Convention (June 22, 1933)
Noting the assaults on democracy by the present world situation, we would affirm our belief in democratic processes, and express our conviction that there must be liberty for all groups, including minority religions and racial groups such as the Indian, the Negro, the Oriental, and the Jew, and minority political groups.
Minutes of the 1933 Wisconsin Baptist State Convention, Resolutions Report, p. 60.
Michigan Baptist Convention (October 12, 1933)
Whereas, Recent developments abroad have resulted in a serious abridgement of religious liberty and bitter racial intolerance;
Whereas, Our denomination historically has a peculiar responsibility for the preservation of the principles of religious liberty and tolerance; be it
Resolved, That our churches re-awaken interest in, and a keener appreciation for, the hard-won standards of religious and racial tolerance, exemplified in the thinking of the prophet Roger Williams, and in the practice of the Colonial community which he founded; be it further
Resolved, That we do express our sympathies for the persecuted, both Jews and Christians, and that we take our stand in opposition to the popular Fascist tide, for a pulpit and a worship free from governmental restraint or discrimination.
Minutes of the 1933 Annual Meeting of the Michigan Baptist State Convention, Report of the Resolutions Committee, p. 52.
Iowa Baptist Convention (October 13, 1933)
Sixth. An intelligent nationalism is indispensable to world peace and progress. A perverted nationalism, widely prevalent in the world today, is a menace of great proportions and full of threat for the best interest of the nations. Modern Germany presents the frightful example of perverted nationalism, ruthlessly persecuting the Jews and denying them the rights and privileges which go with orderly and impartial government. Militarism – unmistakable ally of a false nationalism, expressed its demands in our own country today, albeit under cover of an out-moded phrase as, “adequate defense.” We deplore the fact that in the United States, large and increasing expenditures are being made on the military and naval establishment and this in the face of the inadequacy of local, state and national effort to drive economic fear and want from the lives of millions of our people. In the name of God of all nations, races, and peoples, we deplore the prevalence and insidious influence of a nationalism, falsely so called, which engenders racial hate, which looks upon other nations through eyes of mistrust or hate, which expends vast sums of money on the discredited and iniquitous war system; and we challenge our people and all people to fresh adventure along the way of trust, goodwill and cooperation. We call upon the World Disarmament Conference to achieve substantial reduction in all armaments and we pledge our fullest support to this end.
Minutes of the 1933 Annual Meeting of the Iowa Baptist Convention, Resolutions Committee, Resolution Six, p. 40.
District of Columbia Baptist Convention (November 16, 1938) – 3 Resolutions
Resolved, That we deplore the ruthless and uncalled for cruelties to which the Jews are being subjected by Nazi Germany, and earnestly pray that these inexcusable persecutions may be stopped.”
RESOLUTIONS RELATIVE TO PERSECUTION OF JEWS
Appalled as we are by the most distressing position into which the Jewish people are now forced in Germany and elsewhere, in utter violation of the sacred principle of religious liberty and the rights of humanity, we, as Baptists of the District of Columbia in Convention assembled, do voice our most solemn protest against these outrages and our most earnest appeal to the governments involved to put an end to these cruel oppressions.
Dr. Gove G. Johnson
Wm. E. LaRue
Committee of Baptist Ministers’ Conference.
Be it Resolved, That this Convention, representing a constituency of thirty Churches and a membership of twenty thousand, express its unqualified approval of the expression of indignation of the President of the United States at his press conference on November 15, 1938, in his characterization [end p 44] of the ruthless and inhuman treatment of the Jews in Germany by the avowed authority of the German Government, and that copies of this resolution be sent to the President and the Secretary of State.
Submitted by Mr. E. Hilton Jackson
Minutes of the 1938 Annual Session of the Columbia Association of Baptist Churches, Resolutions Committee – Related to the Persecution of Jews, pp. 43-45.
Metropolitan Ministers Conference of New York (November 1938)
As Baptists whose forefathers have stood valiantly for the principles of religious liberties of all peoples and the separation of church and state and have always proclaimed the tenets which make for good will, toleration and the recognition of the sacredness of human personality, therefore be it resolved that this conference of Baptist ministers of Greater New York and vicinity go on record as deeply deploring the increased hatreds of races and express our sympathy for the oppressed and afflicted in Europe and call upon our people to exert every influence to prevent religious and racial antipathies and antagonisms of all kinds and under all considerations and circumstances.
The Watchman-Examiner (8 December 1938), pp. 1290-1291; see also p. 1288.
Iowa Baptist Convention (1941)
Whereas, all over the face of the earth, people are being persecuted and enslaved under the evil principle that “might makes right,” and
Whereas, Baptists believe in freedom of the individual and of nations; therefore, be it
Resolved, that we grieve because of the injustices and sufferings, bloodshed and mass-murder that are present on every hand in the world because of sin, selfishness and senseless strife; that we pledge ourselves to maintain our nation as a land of opportunity, a cradle of liberty, an asylum for the oppressed, a place for religious as well as political freedom, where church and state are separate, where freedom of conscience still prevails, and where we can worship God in spirit and in truth according to the dictates of our own consciences.
Minutes of the 1941 Annual Meeting of the Iowa Baptist Convention, Resolutions Committee, Resolution VII, p. 49.
Ohio Baptist Convention (1941)
Whereas there appears to be a rising tide of anti-semitism and other racial antagonisms; and
Whereas we believe such racial feelings to be contrary to the Christian ideal, and to the best interests of our country; therefore
Be It Resolved that we urge all of our people to refrain from activities and comments which tend to fan such hatreds; that we urge the elimination of all restrictions and discriminations which tend to develop racial prejudices.
Minutes of the Annual Meeting of the 1941 Ohio Baptist Convention, Report of the Resolutions Committee, “Morals and Spiritual Interests,” p. 52.
New York State Baptist Convention (1942 and 1943)
B. Jewish Persecution
Whereas, more people today than ever before in human history are suffering the loss of freedom, and are being persecuted because of their religious loyalties; therefore, be it
Resolved, that we as Baptists, true to our historic and Christian tradition, protest against such coercion and persecution, including those suffered by our Hebrew brethren throughout the world, and pray that the moral conscience of the world and particularly of our own country may become active in helping to change this deplorable condition.
Minutes of the 1942 Annual Meeting of the New York State Baptist Convention, Report of the Committee on Resolutions, Resolution IV, International Relations – B. “Jewish Persecution,” p. 22; Minutes of the 1943 Annual Meeting of the New York State Baptist Convention, Report of the Committee on Resolutions, Resolution IV, International Relations – B. “Jewish Persecution,” p. 21.
Connecticut State Baptist Convention (1943)
Whereas, we find ourselves in a global war when millions are ravaged by suffering, hunger, disease and moral and spiritual confusion; and
Whereas, we believe that Christian fellowship is the only remaining link which binds people together and transcends all barriers;…
Whereas, We are contending against the theory of race superiority as expressed by the Axis powers through their leaders; and
Whereas, We see mounting evidence of practices based upon acceptance of this theory in our own country, therefore, be it
Resolved, That we call upon all churches and the government to be impartial in the granting of liberty and opportunity to all, regardless of race or culture.
Minutes of the 1943 Annual Meeting of the Connecticut Baptist Convention, Report of the Committee on Resolutions, p. 69.
Illinois State Baptist Convention (1944)
We decry the continued pattern of white domination of all colored peoples in whatever form it is expressed, and condemn all manifestations and practices of anti-Semitism on the grounds, that such things are contrary to the spirit and teaching of Christ, and are a violent, inexcusable repudiation of the fundamental principles of American constitutional democracy. We advocate the integration of colored peoples into our economic, political, educational, religious and social areas upon the basis of equality.
1944 Illinois Baptist Annual, Report of the Resolutions Committee, Resolution V, “Social Issues,” p. 66.
West Virginia State Baptist Convention (1945)
One of the most insidious evils of our day is the rapid spread of anti-semetism (sic); one recently stated that there were approximately 200 anti-Jewish agencies, or propaganda groups, in the U. S. A. The terrible slaughter of Jews over the earth in recent years might happen here, and the church has a vital stake in the matter of protecting the rights of the “chosen people” of God.
Minutes of the 1945 Annual Session of the West Virginia State Convention, Report on the Commission of Social Progress, pp. 39-40.
Philadelphia Baptist Association (1945)
“The tensions magnified by the coming of peace are the direct concern of the church. Anti-semitism, as Nazi as ever, flies under different flags. The “Negro-White” problems, the Labor-Management quarrels give evidence of absence of a sense of brotherhood or a sense of common destiny, while there are specifics offer by our program, the church can still see its duty to provide eyes that perceive, ears that understand and quiet hearts.”
Minutes of the 1945 Annual Meeting of the Philadelphia Baptist Association, Report of the Resolutions Committee, p. 27.
New York State Baptist Convention (1945)
F. The British Government and the Jews in Palestine
WHEREAS, The concern of Christians is always to be for individuals in need anywhere regardless of race, nationality, creed or condition; therefore, be it
RESOLVED, That this Convention go on record as favoring the offering of asylum to persecuted minority peoples by the free countries that have pledged themselves to the securing of justice and freedom for all men.
Minutes of the 1945 Annual Meeting of the New York State Baptist Convention, Report of the Committee on Resolutions, Resolution II, Post-War Concerns – F. The British Government and the Jews in Palestine, p. 18.
New Jersey State Baptist Convention (1946)
M. Jews of the World
Whereas, The Jewish people of many countries have been driven from their homes by anti-Semites, and
Whereas, It is still impossible for them to return to their former homes, therefore be it
Resolved, That as a state convention we express declarative opposition to anti-Semitism and that we approve for Jews everywhere, as for all people, their right to seek their own way of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Be it further
Resolved, That we express to President Truman through our secretary our approval of his concern for the welfare of persecuted Jews, as revealed in his readjustment of the quota system in our own land and his desire to find security in rehabilitation for the dispossessed Jews of the world.
Minutes of the 1946 New Jersey Baptist Convention, Report of the Resolutions Committee, Resolution m – “Jews of the World,” p. 25.
Rhode Island State Baptist Convention (1947)
Whereas Baptists believe strongly that the individual should be considered as the most significant unit in all government,…Furthermore be it resolved that we express ourselves as being directly opposed to all forms of dictatorship, whether identified with Communism, National Socialism, Fascism, or National Imperialism.”
Whereas the New Testament makes plain that “God has made of one blood all nations of men to dwell upon the face of the earth,” and Whereas we firmly believe that all men, irrespective of race or religion, are essentially equal and dear to the Father’s heart,
Therefore be it resolved that we urge all Christians to put into practice this belief, by making friendships across racial and religious lines; and that they be urged to use their influence to see that as fully as possible no discrimination is sown to any individual in business, political and social life because of his race or creed.
1947 Yearbook of the Rhode Island Baptist State Convention, Resolutions Report, pp. 34-35.
Rhode Island State Baptist Convention (1948)
Whereas a rising tide of anti-Semitism, racial prejudice and class distinction threaten to destroy national harmony and Christian brotherhood:
Be it resolved that we reaffirm our faith in our Constitution’s conception of man’s rights, and acknowledge as Creator, One Father who is [end p 30] Lord over all.” (P 31)
1948 Yearbook of the Rhode Island Baptist State Convention, Resolutions Report, pp. 30-31.
Vermont Baptist Convention (1948)
Whereas: We are keenly conscious of the presence of racial prejudice, hatred and misunderstanding in the world of today,
And whereas: We realize that this racial prejudice has much to do with the difficulty of bringing and establishing of peace on the earth,
Be it resolved: That we sincerely deplore the situation as we see it illustrated specifically in Palestine, and we see it exemplified in many cases in our own country, and that we pledge ourselves as a denomination to deepen the conviction that God has made “of one blood” “all nations to dwell upon the earth,” and that we exemplify this great truth in our dealing with all men.
Minutes of the 1948 Vermont Baptist Convention, Committee on Resolutions, Resolution 9, p. 41.
Rhode Island State Baptist Convention (1988)
Whereas, anti-Semitic activity continues to occur in our nation, our state, and many of our cities, and
Whereas, both our Baptist and Rhode Island beginnings stress freedom of religion for all persons, and
Whereas, the cause of Christ is served neither by silence nor by participation in such activity,
Therefore, as members of the American Baptist Churches of Rhode Island, sitting in Convention April 23 and 24, 1988, be it resolved that:
- We, as individuals, congregations, and church leaders within the ABCORI family stand united in our abhorrence of anti-Semitism, and
- Each congregation seek to provide a forum for education and discussion of the subject of anti-Semitism, and
- Individuals, congregations, and church leaders not be silent when such activities occur, but “speak” in such ways as
- Individual and corporate prayers of confession and intercession,
- Individual and corporate letters of concern sent to a neighborhood temple or rabbi,
- Letters to editors of newspapers, and
- Appropriate public expressions of concern.
- Congregations seek relationship with Jewish congregations and with other interfaith concerns…for the purpose of learning from and about one another, and
- Church leaders be intentionally aware of the subtle way in which anti-Semitic language and expressions creep into our worship and other church activities.
Be it further resolved that we, as American Baptist Christians, be faithful not only to our Judeo-Christian roots, as we seek to be God’s people in these twentieth and twenty-first centuries.
1988 Yearbook of the Rhode Island Baptist State Convention, Resolutions Report, p. 43.
American Baptist Churches of New Jersey (April 14, 2014)
“A Statement of Solidarity with the Jewish Community”
Whereas, as Christians we recognize and are grateful for the Jewish roots of our faith, noting especially that Jesus himself was a Jew, and
Whereas, the American Baptist Churches USA has passed multiple resolutions condemning anti-Semitism at its national conventions (1934, 1939, 1961), and many of our regions took similar actions during the Holocaust era, and
Whereas, the American Baptist Churches USA held its most recent biennial convention in Overland Park in 2013 and will return for its next biennial in 2015,
Therefore, we stand in solidarity with the Jewish community of Overland Park, Kansas and grieve with the families that lost loved ones in the Black Sunday attack at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City in Overland Park and at the Village Shalom Retirement Community in Leawood, on April 13, 2014, just one day before the start of Passover.
Furthermore, we reiterate our opposition to all forms of anti-Semitism and prejudice, in the United States and globally, and encourage our churches to do everything possible to express love and friendship to people of every nation, religion and race.
http://www.abcnj.net/a-statement-of-solidarity-with-the-jewish-community-2014/ (accessed 1 June 2016).