The Centennial Gathering of the National Council of Churches and Church World Service expressed strong support Wednesday for beleaguered Christian minorities around the world, and urged immediate and comprehensive reform of immigration laws in the U.S.
The Gathering also called upon U.S. senators to confirm the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty II and issued a message on "honoring the sacredness of religious others."
A "Resolution on the Violence in Iraq" expressed "the solidarity of ... member communions with the Christian community of Iraq, and particularly with the community of Our Lady of Deliverance Syriac Catholic Church" that had been bombed by terrorists on October 31.
The resolution called for the protection of Christians and other religious communities "so that they may live and function enjoying all the benefits guaranteed to them by article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights."
Dr. Diana Eck, chair of the NCC's Interfaith Relations Commission, introduced a message "Honoring the Sacredness of Religious Others: Reaffirming our Commitment to Positive Interfaith Relations." Ther message took note of controversies over the building of Islamic houses of worship and "media-hyped threats to burn the Muslim community's sacred scriptures," and condemned "violence committed in the name of any religion."
The message declared "that the Church, as the body of Christ, is to be a transformative presence for building peaceable communities in the world."
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Click here to read the resolution, "Resolution on the Violence in Iraq."
Click here to read the "Message on Honoring the Sacredness of Religious Others."