From the Worldwide Faith News archives

ACNS3280 Retired Archbishop calls for Ministry of Peacemaking

From "Anglican Communion News Service" <>
Date Tue, 28 Jan 2003 23:29:56 -0000

ACNS 3280     |     KENYA     |     28 JANUARY 2003

Retired Archbishop calls for Ministry of Peacemaking

[All Africa News Agency] The Church in Africa has been challenged to pursue
the ministry of peacemaking and conflict resolution more vigorously.

Retired Anglican Archbishop in Kenya, the Rt Revd David Gitari, recently
called upon Christians to embrace a culture of peacemaking and conflict
resolution, saying the two were fast becoming "central in the pastoral life
of the Church, due to their impact on the life of the faithful."

Archbishop Gitari said this while presenting a paper titled Towards Conflict
Resolution, during a three-day theological conference (January 15-17) held
in Nairobi, under the auspices of the Jesuits (Society of Jesus).

The conference, whose theme was "Translating Theological Researches into
Lived Realities: The Case of Africa", attracted theological scholars and
students from various denominations, as well as representatives from the
secular community.

The retired Archbishop stressed that "in many aspects, if not all, every one
of us in Africa has been affected by the two issues (peacemaking and
conflict resolution), hence the need for all of us to get involved in
various ways of participating."

He called on Christians to not only be peace lovers, but to aspire to become
peacemakers, where both spiritual and physical contributions could
effectively be incorporated.

Citing Sudan and Somalia as cases at hand, Archbishop Gitari observed that
"many of the cases edged on conflicts, currently doing the rounds on the
African continent, were due to lack of commitment to peacemaking among some
of us." He stressed that "all of us must get involved in this business."

He also underlined the need for people involved in peacemaking and conflict
resolution to incorporate cultural aspects on the issue.

"While each of the African community has been endowed with one or many ways
of peacemaking and conflict resolution, some of the people behind
peacemaking have neglected [cultural approaches]," he said.

Furthermore, he said that this would supplement the many cases we hear of
cease-fire agreements and roundtable meetings, some of which have turned out
to be "badly done and unsuccessful businesses."

Archbishop Gitari described the Church as a good avenue through which peace
could be built and conflicts resolved effectively. "But for this to be
realised, each of us will have to be committed, individually or at community
level," he said.

The ACNSlist is published by the Anglican Communion Office, London.

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