A statement from the Primate, the Most Reverend Andrew S. Hutchison concerning the violence in the Middle East
Once again the peoples of the world are compelled to witness violence, hatred and pain in Israel and Lebanon. This is by no means a new phenomena and even the psalmist centuries before the birth of Christ called upon his community to, “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.” None of us must ever become complacent about the pain anxiety and sheer terror that many innocent people on both sides of the border have and are experiencing as they flee from their homes to an uncertain future. In the past few days the escalation of violence has greatly disturbed me and all parties involved in the conflict need to be able to pause, take a step back and look for other solutions than those of guns tanks and bombs. It will take far more courage to do this than to continue in the conflict.Our country has a proud history of peaceful intervention and I call upon those in positions of leadership and influence particularly our Prime Minister to seek ways to bring peace into the violence of this situation.
No matter how hopeless the prospects of peace may seem to the world we, as Christians must pray as our contribution to the process of peace and reconciliation. I call upon all Anglicans and each of our parishes to include a specific time of prayer for peace in the weeks ahead. I will be meeting with Archbishop Clive Handford the President Bishop of the Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East in Coventry England later today and will convey to him our concern and prayers for his ministry and for people of all faiths that they will find the instruments of peace rather than of war.
The Most Reverend Andrew S. Hutchison
Archbishop and Primate
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