US delegates say sorry over Iraq
Posted: 02 Nov 2006 @ 00:00
REPRESENTATIVES of the US Conference for the World Council of Churches
described the Iraq war as a "mistake" and apologised to the ecumenical
community for not raising a loud enough prophetic voice to prevent it.
Its moderator, the Very Revd Leonid Kishkovsky, said: "We lament with
special anguish the war in Iraq, launched with deception, and violating global
norms of justice and human rights."
The US had responded to the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001 "by
seeking to reclaim a privileged and secure place in the world, raining down
terror on the truly vulnerable among our global neighbours", the statement said.
"Our leaders turned a deaf ear to the voices of church leaders throughout
our nation and the world, entering into imperial projects that seek to dominate
and control for the sake of our own national interests. Nations have been
demonised, and God has been enlisted in agendas that are nothing short of
The statement, in the form of a prayer, also expressed repentance for the US
refusal to acknowledge its responsibility over global warming, its rejection of
multilateral agreements aimed at reversing "disastrous trends", and its refusal
to confront "the racism that infects our policies around the world".
The Revd John Thomas, president of United Church of Christ, said that an
emerging theme in conversation with partners around the world was that the US
was being perceived as a dangerous nation.
A BOYCOTT of Coca-Cola was called for by Angelious Michael, from
the Jeypore Evangelical Lutheran Church in India. He said that, at two villages
in the southern state of Kerala, ground-water levels sank when Coca-Cola opened
two factories. Waste products were also polluting the environment. The Assembly
also heard of the entrenchment of the caste system in the Church in India.
Dalits had become Christians in large numbers, said the Bishop of Chennai, the
Rt Revd V. Devasahayam, of the Church of South India.