Cairo and Istanbul: A Statement of Condolence and Condemnation

Cairo and Istanbul: A Statement of Condolence and Condemnation

It was with horror and sadness that we witnessed bomb attacks in Cairo and Istanbul this weekend.  We extend our deepest condolences and prayers to the families of those killed, and we fervently pray for the health and healing of the injured.  We offer our support and solidarity for communities in Egypt and Turkey, for the populations of Syria and Iraq, and for all people who live in the face of violence and fear everyday throughout the Middle East and beyond.

The terrible images of the aftermaths of the bomb explosions broadcast from the Butrosiyya Church adjacent to the Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in Cairo and from near a soccer stadium and a park in Istanbul are visual reminders of how humanity can destroy fellow human beings with their hopes and their aspirations in a moment.  We condemn these acts of violence, yearning for the day when violence will cease, and the realm of God’s peace and justice will prevail.

Both attacks seem to have communal or sectarian motivations.  Early indications are that the Istanbul attack was perpetrated by a Kurdish group; and while those responsible for the attack in Cairo have not been identified, the Christian community was clearly the target, and the venue was especially significant.  We pray for a day when all of God’s people can live without fear of each other, and that the great diversity of human communities—of religion, ethnicity, and race, among others—that God imagined is respected and celebrated—in the Middle East, in the United States, and around the world.

In this season of Advent, we nurture hope for peace with justice, experience God’s infinite grace and mercy for all people, and anticipate the day when “the wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them.”  (Isaiah 11:6)

Rev. Dr. John Dorhauer, General Minister and President

Rev. Dr. Sharon Watkins, General Minister and President

Rev. Dr. Traci Blackmon, Acting Executive Minister, Justice and Witness Ministries

Rev. Dr. Ron Degges, President, Disciples Home Missions

Rev. Dr. James Moos, Executive Minister, Wider Church Ministries, Co-Executive, Global Ministries

Rev. Julia Brown Karimu, President, Division of Overseas Ministries, Co-Executive, Global Ministries

PDF Version of Statement

Additional statements are available as follows:

General Director of the Coptic Evangelical Organization for Social Services Responds to Bombing at St. Mark’s Cathedral

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land sends prayers

National Council of Churches USA condemns violence, grieves loss of life

World Council of Churches mourns lost lives, calls for end to violence

Conference of European Churches joins in calls for peace and solidarity