From the Worldwide Faith News archives


Date 04 May 1996 16:07:51


                   by Jerry L. Van Marter 
LOUISVILLE, KY--The Rev. James E. Andrews, stated clerk of the General 
Assembly of the 2.7-million member Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) issued a 
statement March 8 expressing the church's sadness over the terror bombings 
in Israel and condemning such acts.  The full text of Andrews' statement: 
    "The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) is deeply saddened by the recent 
bombings in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Ashkelon, and is gravely alarmed by the 
potential of accelerated cycles of violence and punitive reactions. 
    "The Church expresses its genuine condolences to the families, friends 
and neighbors of victims - both Israelis and Palestinians -- killed or 
injured in the attacks.  No words can soothe the grief or sorrow of 
survivors of such human tragedies.  We share their pain, and pray for 
solace and comfort. 
    "It also strongly condemns all acts of terror, including violent 
attacks, on civilians, and fears that such activities can only result in 
the derailment of the peace process, which appears to be the objective 
sought by a minority of extremists in different camps. 
       - We call on the media to help audiences understand that in wake of 
   violent tragedies such as the world has witnessed recently in these 
   bombings, there were numerous Israeli victims, but there were also 
   Palestinian victims in the same bombings, and that, just as the Israelis 
   mourn the loss of their beloved, so too do Palestinian families grieve 
   for the loss of their loved ones. 
       -  We join with other Christian churches, and with communities of 
   other faiths, both in this country and abroad, who are committed to 
   peace, justice and reconciliation, in praying for and working toward an 
   end to the cycles of violence and the building of peaceful relations 
   between Israeli and Palestinian neighbors. 
       - We urge our own constituent members to engage in prayer, and to 
   support all efforts aimed at achieving peace in the Middle East. 
       - We commend government leaders, and those in positions of 
   influence, in Israel, the Palestinian National Authority and the United 
   States of America, who continue to be committed to the peace process. 
       - We wish to communicate to our partner churches,  ecumenical bodies 
   and the Christian community at large in the Middle East, our continued 
   solidarity in their struggle to be a faithful witness to the love of 
   Christ and God's peaceful reign, in the midst of suffering and 

For more information contact Presbyterian News Service
  Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Louisville, KY 40202
  phone 502-569-5504            fax 502-569-8073  
  E-mail   Web page: 


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