WCC repeats plea for release of Syrian archbishops
A CALL for the release of two Syrian archbishops, kidnapped near Aleppo in 2013, was repeated by the World Council of Churches last week, in a statement that also drew attention to the “alarming and rapidly deteriorating situation of Christians in the Middle East”. The Syriac Orthodox Archbishop of Aleppo, the Most Revd Yohanna Ibrahim, and the Greek Orthodox Archbishop of Aleppo, the Most Revd Paul Yazigi, were taken on their way back from the Turkish border (News, 4 October 2013). “Conflict, violence, discrimination, demolition of churches, and forced displacement put the presence and witness of Christianity in the region of its birth at great risk,” the WCC’s central committee said.
LWF and Islamic Relief offer advice to aid agencies
A MANUAL to help aid agencies attune their work to the faith of those they seek to help has been published by the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and Islamic Relief Worldwide. The general secretary of the LWF, the Revd Dr Martin Junge, explained: “The vast majority of people have some form of faith or religious identity. When disaster strikes or conflict erupts and they have to leave their homes, they don’t leave their faith behind. . . The intention of faith-sensitive psychosocial support is to address their needs and those of the communities where they settle, whilst remaining true to humanitarian principles of impartiality and neutrality.” The manual, A Faith-Sensitive Approach in Humanitarian Response: Guidance on mental health and psychosocial programming, is available at https://interagencystandingcommittee.org/node/22264/view.
REUTERSConfined: statues of the Holy Family are placed in a cage outside Christ Church Cathedral, Indianapolis, as a protest against the child-separation policy being operated on the United States border. A slogan, “Every family is holy”, is displayed