The message comes at a time when the situation in Syria continues to deteriorate. The situation was discussed in a meeting at the WCC headquarters in Geneva in late December 2011, in which some twenty Syrian church leaders from various Christian traditions in Syria participated.
The message was crafted by the Executive Committee during their meetings last week from 14 to 18 February in Bossey, Switzerland. In the message they expressed hope for an end to violence and a national dialogue to emerge from the conflict, based on peace with justice, recognition of human rights and human dignity and the need to live together in mutual respect.
The message also strongly supported a joint letter from the three heads of churches in Syria sent out to congregations in the country in December. In the letter they condemned "the use of any type of violence" while encouraging their members "not to fear and not to lose hope".
It also called on WCC member churches to "engage in concrete actions of solidarity" during this time of difficulties. Quoting the WCC constitution the message read "as a fellowship of churches we are to express the common concern of the churches in the service of human need, the breaking down of barriers between people and the promotion of one human family in justice and peace".
Read full text of the WCC Executive Committee message to the Syrian churches
WCC leader calls for an end to Syrian violence (WCC press release of 9 August 2011)
WCC member churches in Syria
The World Council of Churches promotes Christian unity in faith, witness and service for a just and peaceful world. An ecumenical fellowship of churches founded in 1948, today the WCC brings together 349 Protestant, Orthodox, Anglican and other churches representing more than 560 million Christians in over 110 countries, and works cooperatively with the Roman Catholic Church. The WCC general secretary is Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, from the [Lutheran] Church of Norway. Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland.
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