Global Ministries leaders are offering support and prayers as they stand in solidarity with church partners in Sri Lanka, condemning the heinous Easter Sunday bombings that killed 290 people and injured 500 more.
The common overseas ministry of the United Church of Christ and the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ (DOC)) is longtime partners with the Church of the American Ceylon Mission in Sri Lanka. Both faith organizations immediately decried the reprehensible acts of terrorism on April 21. Bombs went off in eight locations on Sunday morning in the cities of Colombo, Negombo, and Batticaloa. Three churches and three Star hotels were hit in a coordinated attack that targeted Christians and foreigners in the South Asian Country.
The Church of the American Ceylon Mission, a steadfast mission partner of Global Ministries dating back more than 200 years, immediately censured the killings and called for countrywide cooperation against terrorism.
“We consider these attacks on Worshippers who gathered in the churches to receive the blessings and the peace of Resurrected Lord Jesus Christ is against the norms of a civilized society and a threat to those who love Justice and Peace of the whole world,” its statement reads. “We the Church of the American Ceylon Mission request the cooperation of every peace-loving citizen of Sri Lanka irrespective of religion and ethnicity, to join hands to eradicate terrorism in any form from our Country.”
Over the centuries Global Ministries has had many mission personnel serve in Sri Lanka, which is primarily a Buddhist country. The American Board of Commissioners of Foreign Mission (a predecessor of UCC Wider Church Ministries and Global Ministries) first engaged in mission work in Sri Lanka in 1813. Its partner, first known as the American Ceylon Mission, remains one of two primary partners of Global Ministries in Sri Lanka. The UCC and DOC, through Global Ministries, also partner with the National Christian Council of Sri Lanka.