From the Worldwide Faith News archives www.wfn.org
Statement of National Association of Evangelicals
Worldwide Faith News <email@example.com>
Wed, 12 Sep 2001 17:57:59 -0700
For immediate release: September 12, 2001
Washington, DC -- The National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) has urged
its 51 member denominations and 43,000 churches to mobilize for "National
Day of Mourning and Prayer" on Sunday, September 16 in response to the first
major terrorist attack against the United States.
The terrorist acts of September 11, 2001, and the days and weeks to follow
will shape the future of the United States.
"We are deeply shocked and saddened by these terrorist attacks and call upon
followers of Jesus Christ in this country and around the world to pray and
to reach out with compassionate help," said Dr. Edward L. Foggs, NAE's
Chairman of the Board.
"The Scriptures call us to 'pray for those in authority' so we urge prayer
as well for President George W. Bush, Vice-President Richard Cheney, and our
government leaders through this national tragedy," he said.
Many people will look to churches, pastors and people of faith for guidance
and help. The National Association of Evangelicals encourages the
denominations, churches, and organizations affiliated with the NAE to look
to the Word of God for wisdom at this time and to be the people of God in
the midst of tragedy.
The National Association of Evangelicals is joining with National Prayer
Committee, National Day of Prayer, and Mission America Coalition in
sponsoring a full-page advertisement in the newspaper USA Today on Friday,
September 14, calling for a "National Day of Mourning and Prayer" on Sunday,
September 16. This advertisement can be seen at www.nationalprayer.org.
Over the next hours and days many are holding prayer services, seeking to
discern the situation and will have the opportunity to express Christ's love
and care to those who grieve or are in despair. We want to encourage all
denominations and churches across the country to be sources of light and
NAE is working with its relief and development arm, World Relief
Corporation, to assess the situation and to help churches and pastors deal
with this tragedy.
World Relief has a sixty-year history of responding to natural and man made
disasters overseas and in the United States. "There is so much to be done,"
said Clive Calver, President of World Relief, "not just now, but in the days
and months that lie ahead. While many may not always remember, the victims
and the bereaved cannot easily forget. They will need the pastoral support
and help that only comes through Jesus Christ." World Relief will offer
professional skills and support to pastors and churches, and will seek to
link together the specific efforts of churches and denominations in order
that society may witness the Church in action. Calver continued, "Call
1-800-535-LIFE and let's stand together to support the Church at this
At the same time, World Evangelical Fellowship, of which NAE is a member
internationally, is calling for the prayers of Evangelicals throughout the
world and seeking counsel from churches in other nations that have faced
similar acts. This is sadly not the first time that churches have had to
respond to acts of terrorism.
"NAE belongs to the large family of 114 member alliances of World
Evangelical Fellowship. This family of 160 million Evangelicals worldwide is
upholding the United States in prayer. Many of these 114 member nations have
experienced terrorism and are sharing with NAE how churches in their nations
have helped Christians to be the people of God in the midst of crisis,"
states Dwight Gibson, North American Director of World Evangelical
Fellowship. Prayers from the worldwide family of God will be posted on
We encourage churches and pastors to consider the following as they are
ministering in these days:
1. Open churches for special prayer services and extended times for people
who may want to pray and seek pastoral counseling.
2. Assist people in processing their anguish, sense of hopelessness and
concern. Many people will be looking for counseling, small group discussions
and other forms of guidance. NAE calls for this to be a time when the
churches of the U.S. reach out in unique and varied ways. Listen to the
hearts of the people in your community.
3. Fear is a natural response during times such as this and potentially for
weeks and months to come. Communicate the strength of a sovereign God during
difficult times. It may be especially important to help children walk
through this. Help parents and those who work with children to give
age-appropriate Christ-centered teaching to children.
4. Find tangible ways of putting feet to our prayers. The situation is
still being assessed, but through blood banks, humanitarian aid groups and
community service agencies there are opportunities to assist.
5. Be people of truth. At times like these much rumor and speculation is
rampant. Help sort out fact from fantasy.
6. Life is a gift from God. There has been much loss of life. The pain for
those left behind is tragic. Seek ways to express love and care to those in
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