Pax Christi calls for prayer and fasting for peace in Iraq

 Pax Christi, the international Catholic peace movement, is urging its members, supporters and Christian communities around the country to pray and fast for peace in Iraq next Tuesday, 24 September. This is the date which has been set for the debate within Parliament on the current crisis with Iraq. Pax Christi will also hold a silent vigil and fast for peace in Parliament square between 11.00 am and 5.00 pm on 24 September. Speaking from the Pax Christi office, Pat Gaffney, General Secretary said: " We are living in a very dangerous time - a time of war and rumours of war. We need spiritual and political actions at this time to help inspire and inform the debate with a spirit of true peace and justice. Prayer and fasting are traditional practices for people of faith - our simple fast can be an act of penance at this critical time" Pax Christi is also urging that prayers and fasting for peace with Iraq be made in communities and parishes each week - suggesting that Friday be set aside for this. Pax Christi has produced a simple sheet of prayers in support of this. In July, Pax Christi launched the Christian Declaration on the Morality and Legality of War with Iraq. To date, more than 5,000 signatures have been presented to Mr Blair. The office reports that there are daily demands for these petitions from groups and parishes around the country. An increasing number of signatures are now coming from the United States where Pax Christi USA have made the Declaration available to its members. This is an important time for solidarity and action between British and American Christians. Send us an e-mail if you would like to add your name to the petition

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