Escalating tensions with Iran in the last two weeks verging on war resulted in the Iraqi parliament voting overwhelmingly to expel US troops from the country. The vote was received with a strong rejection by the US, despite President Trump having campaigned on a promise to bring US troops home. Having been present as an occupying army since the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq, the vote called renewed attention to US military presence in the region. But the US has done more to militarize the Middle East than station troops there. It has provided military arms and equipment, allocated military aid, and approved arms sales to the region in staggering quantities.
Please contact your representatives in Washington, urging them to constrain the US military presence in the Middle East in the form of troops, military aid, provision of arms, and arms sales approvals.Read more
The work of Al Amana Centre is based on 125 years of collaboration between Christians and Muslims in the Sultanate of Oman. The Reformed Church in America began collaborating with the people in Oman already in the year 1892. In schools and hospitals, they worked together with Omanis to educate and treat people.
We know you have been following the news from the greater region of the Middle East over the past days. We certainly do that here as well. How things are here? How could people of faith pray for the region? What could be done in the US and around the world by the churches?
God is in the midst of the city; it shall not be moved; God will help it when the morning dawns.
The nations are in an uproar, the kingdoms totter; he utters his voice, the earth melts.
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; he breaks the bow, and shatters the spear;
he burns the shields with fire.
‘Be still, and know that I am God! I am exalted among the nations, I am exalted in the earth.’
—Psalm 46: 5-6, 9-10
Anger and animosity. Threats. Murder and assassinations. Military bluster and belligerency. Calls for revenge and retaliation. In the past several days, we have witnessed the rapid escalation in hostilities verging on all-out war between the United States and Iran.Read more
As a Just Peace Church, the United Church of Christ has long advocated for diplomatic and peaceful engagement with Iran. We have spoken out on multiple occasions in opposition to inflammatory rhetoric and direct provocation that could ultimately lead to war. In response to recent events, our UCC leadership has issued a call to prayer and fasting for peace during this season of Epiphany, to bring us back from the brink of war with Iran.Read more
When the song of the angels is stilled,
When the star in the sky is gone,
When the kings and the princes are home,
When the shepherds are back with their flocks,
The work of Christmas begins: To find the lost,
To heal the broken,
To feed the hungry,
To release the prisoner,
To rebuild the nations,
To bring peace among people,
To make music in the heart.
Faith leaders across the USA, including Disciples and UCC leaders, released on 9 July a jointly signed statement entitled “Back from the Brink: Faith leaders call for diplomacy, not war, with Iran.”
Coordinated through Sojourners, the statement describes a USA-Iran war as an unmitigated disaster as well as morally and religiously indefensible. Global Ministries' Co-Executives, the Rev. Dr. Julia Brown Karimu and the Rev. Dr. James Moos, are among the signatories.Read more
In 2015, the Obama Administration signed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) with Iran and the other UN Security Council permanent members plus Germany, which the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) supported in a 2015 General Assembly resolution. This deal (called the Iran Nuclear Deal) did a lot to slow Iran’s path to acquiring nuclear weapons in exchange for sanctions relief, and is consistent with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), to which the US and Iran are both signatories. However, in May 2018 President Trump decided to pull the US out of the deal. Now, in May 2019, Iran has decided to stop complying fully with the deal as well. Our European allies still have hope for the JCPOA and want it to succeed, but without US involvement, there is a limit to what it can achieve.Read more
In light of President Trump and John Bolton’s dangerous escalations against Iran, 62 organizations – including Global Ministries of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and United Church of Christ – sent a letter calling on Congress to pass legislation to halt a march to war with Iran. The National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA has also issued a statement urging de-escalation of tensions.
The combined groups, representing millions of Americans concerned about renewed threats of war with Iran, signals a strong desire for Congress to step up and block Trump from leading America into yet another war of choice.
According to the letter, “As the drumbeat for war grows louder, Congress must fulfill its Constitutional duty and enact further constraints to unequivocally prevent the administration from launching an unauthorized war.” The letter concludes, “The American people do not want another disastrous war of choice in the Middle East. Congress has the chance to stop a war before it starts. Please take action before it is too late.”Read more
The escalation of tensions with Iran, provoked by the Trump administration, is deeply worrisome. The National Council of Churches strongly urges President Trump to pursue a path of diplomacy and negotiations, marked by good faith, in order to avoid war. We draw encouragement from reports the president does not seek war with Iran. We call upon the Administration to fully comply with the terms of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the “Iran Nuclear Deal,” to return to a policy of dialogue, and to remove warships and soldiers from this already fragile region.Read more
WASHINGTON: The National Council of Churches opposes the Trump Administration’s reimposition of trade sanctions on Iran, ninety days after announcing the United States’ withdrawal from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. All indications are Iran has abided by the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and that it has been successful in deterring any progress toward a nuclear-armed Iran.Read more