Call for Prayers for Peace in Syria
Call for Prayers for Peace
Please pray for peace and peaceful negotiations with Syria this weekend.
Pope Francis has called for a day of fasting and prayer on Saturday, September 7th, but I would also encourage every local church to pray for peace on Sunday, September 8th, in our worship services across the Northern Illinois Conference.
As United Methodists our Social Principle strongly urge restraint in military force against others.
We believe war is incompatible with the teachings and example of Christ. We therefore reject war as an instrument of national foreign policy (¶165C)
The use of chemical weapons against the people of Syria has created terrible suffering and a scary precedent but the dichotomy between military force and impunity is a false one, as pointed out by the General Board of Church and Society (see article listed below), and we need to pray and call for peaceful negotiations.
Pray for the people of Syria. They are the beloved children of God and our human brothers and sisters. Pray for UMCOR personnel who are responding to the humanitarian need of the Syrians.
Pray for US military personnel. Increased military action brings a heightened sense of stress and personal sacrifice to an already stretched military personnel and their families.
Pray for our political leaders, especially our President, Barack Obama, the Secretary of State, John Kerry, and the U.S. Congress members as they make this critical decision in a political context that is already fraught with divisions and acrimony. Urge them to work for peaceful negotiations instead of taking immediate military action.
While I recognize not all United Methodists agree with the call for restraint on military action that our Social Principles urge, I do believe that we can unite in common prayer for peaceful negotiations in Syria for its citizens as well as our own U.S. involvement.
May the prayers for peace go up to God throughout this annual conference this weekend!
~Bishop Sally Dyck
Please see other articles and statements from religious leaders/groups on Syria: