Prayers for Egypt

GENEVA, Switzerland — The World Council of Churches (WCC) chief executive, the Rev. Dr. Olav Fykse Tveit, has called for prayers for healing, justice and peace for all Egyptians.

According to media reports some 17 churches have been burnt and more than 800 people have been killed across the country following Aug.14 clashes, when security forces raided two protest areas in Cairo to clear out supporters of ousted President Mohamed Morsi. A one-month state of emergency has been declared, including a nightly curfew in Cairo and 13 other provinces.

The only way forward is for mutual recognition as equal citizens within Egypt, sharing responsibilities and authority, accepting the diversity of political opinions and religious beliefs.

Tveit said the WCC and its member churches are greatly concerned by the violent turn of events in Egypt and call for an immediate end of violence from all sides.

“The only way forward is for mutual recognition as equal citizens within Egypt, sharing responsibilities and authority, accepting the diversity of political opinions and religious beliefs,” Tveit said in an official letter to the WCC member churches in Egypt.

Tveit went on to say the people of Egypt have been going through a difficult moment in history since the political developments in 2011.

“The Egyptian people showed on different occasions their belief in a multi-religious and multi-cultural society where all parties join hands in facing the current challenges and building a better future,” Tveit said, adding that he hopes this will not be interpreted as a conflict between Christians and Muslims.

Offering prayers for all Egyptians, Tveit prayed: “May God grant them comfort, heal their wounds and accompany them on their way to justice and peace.”

Editor's note: The World Council of Churches (WCC) promotes Christian unity in faith, witness and service for a just, peaceful world. An ecumenical fellowship of churches founded in 1948, by the end of 2012 the WCC had 345 member churches representing more than 500 million Christians from Protestant, Orthodox, Anglican and other traditions in over 110 countries. The WCC works cooperatively with the Roman Catholic Church.

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