As the world experiences the pain of war and yearns for peace in the Middle East, a major gathering of senior church representatives has expressed their concerns for the people of the Middle East. The Church Representatives' Meeting of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland, meeting from 4 to 6 April, at Maynooth in County Kildare, Ireland, has sent letters to the Middle East Council of Churches and to the Heads of Churches in Iraq. To the Middle East Council of Churches, the CRM wrote: "As senior officers of British and Irish Churches meeting in Dublin at this troubled time in history and in this season of Lent, we feel deep concern for all who are living under fear and threat of war. We want to express our solidarity with our Christian brothers and sisters in Iraq and the wider Middle East region. We want to assure them of our prayers and to affirm that we will continue to work for peace with justice for all people of the region." For the Christians in Iraq, the CRM has written to HH Raphael I Bidawid, Chaldean Patriarch of Babylon. The letter included these lines: "The Churches in these islands are on record as being highly doubtful of the wisdom of applying military force to solve the issue of the alleged possession of weapons of mass destruction by the Iraqi Government, and the Churches were dismayed at the manner by which the United Nations was unable to find a new consensus." "We want to assure you that you and all people of Iraq are in the thoughts and prayers of Christians in these islands. We assure you that we remember before God all those who have lost loved ones in the present crisis. We are aware of the active preparations by humanitarian agencies to make a swift response to relieve the pain and suffering that have been inflicted upon the people of Iraq and will encourage church members to support their work with great generosity." Source: CTBI
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