Gaza: World Council of Churches calls for prayers & solidarity
In a statement issued January 22, 2008, the heads of churches in Jerusalem and the Holy Land called on the international community and the state of Israel to end the current siege on the Gaza Strip which has caused most recently cuts in electricity and limited the shipments of medicine, fuel, food and other goods across the border
World Council of Churches
WCC Asks for Prayers, Advocacy and Solidarity with Churches in Gaza
In a statement issued January 22, 2008, the heads of churches in Jerusalem and the Holy Land called on the international community and the state of Israel to end the current siege on the Gaza Strip which has caused most recently cuts in electricity and limited the shipments of medicine, fuel, food and other goods across the border.
The statement says the siege of Gaza has effectively imprisoned one and a half million people without proper food or medicine. The church leaders stress that “this is illegal collective punishment, an immoral act in violation of the basic human, natural as well as international laws. It cannot be tolerated anymore. The siege over Gaza should end now.”
The statement urged Palestinians to unite in ending their differences for the sake of the people in Gaza and urged Israel to act responsibly.
In a letter issued January 23, 2008, the World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Samuel Kobia called on the Council’s 347 member churches around the world to pray for the end of the suffering in Gaza and speak out for the people in Gaza to their governments.
“Address your parishes, the public, your governments and the embassies”, Kobia writes, “calling for an end to the siege, an end to their collective punishments and a negotiated ceasefire”.
The letter urges churches to manifest solidarity with the churches in Palestine by supporting the work done by local churches on the ground and church-related agencies like Action by Churches Together. Kobia also suggests to send messages of support directly to the local churches.
Statement from the heads of churches in Jerusalem
WCC general secretary letter
The World Council of Churches promotes Christian unity in faith, witness and service for a just and peaceful world. An ecumenical fellowship of churches founded in 1948, today the WCC brings together 347 Protestant, Orthodox, Anglican and other churches representing more than 560 million Christians in over 110 countries, and works cooperatively with the Roman Catholic Church. The WCC general secretary is Rev. Dr Samuel Kobia, from the Methodist Church in Kenya. Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland.