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Anglican Peace and Justice Network Communique
Worldwide Faith News <email@example.com>
Wed, 31 Mar 2010 10:56:39 -0700
Anglican Peace and Justice Network Communique
Posted On : March 30, 2010 4:23 PM | Posted By : Webmaster
Related Categories: ACO APJN
We, the delegates to the triennial meeting of the Anglican Peace and
Justice Network in Geneva, Switzerland, have spent the week of 14-20
March 2010, exploring issues of human rights and examining the role
of the United Nations, the World Council of Churches (WCC), and other
faith-based and humanitarian organisations in upholding the rights of
individuals and communities throughout the world.
Embedding our learning and discussions in a theology of justice as
right relationship with God, with one another, and with all Creation,
and in the Anglican Five Marks of Mission, we have focused on
international laws relating to particular themes, including:
* the right to truth, transitional justice, and non-discrimination;
* the rights of women, and everyone's right to health;
* the rights of children, and the importance of education in emergencies;
* the rights of migrants, minorities, and people in exile.
We express our profound appreciation for the commitment of the
Anglican Communion and its member provinces which supported the
participation of approximately 30 persons representing 25 provinces
or jurisdictions, together with a representative of the Old Catholic
Church of Switzerland.
We particularly record our appreciation of:
* the meeting organisers, especially the Anglican UN Office and
Committee in Geneva, who provided a rich, relevant and successful
programme; the Anglican Communion Office, and the Anglican Peace and
Justice Network steering committee;
* the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion, who
challenged us to understand our responsibilities even as he affirmed
and encouraged us in our ministries;
* the liturgies in local churches, and thematic Bible studies
each morning, that enriched our time together and ensured that our
exploration of the themes was grounded in prayer, theology, and the Eucharist;
* the quality and relevance of contributions and dialogue
provided by key leaders of the World Council of Churches, the United
Nations, and the non-governmental sector;
* the opportunity to witness deliberations of the UN Human
Rights Council and tour the Palais des Nations;
* the generosity of welcome, care and hospitality provided by
the local Anglican congregations of Emmanuel, Holy Trinity, and St.
Germain, as well as the WCC.
Recognising that there are universal concepts of justice, and humbly
conscious of our own internal divisions, we encourage our churches to
be sensitive to peoples' struggles in society, and to be aware of
what international agencies are doing to protect and care for all
God's children in our regions. More particularly, we urge our
churches to incorporate issues of justice into missional work and
into theological education at every level
Even as we met in Geneva, seemingly insulated from the violence and
despair prevalent in so many parts of the world, we were reminded of
the dangerous realities to be faced when news came of the murder
attempt on Bishop Martin Barahona of El Salvador, Primate of the
Anglican Province of the Central American Region. We give thanks that
he escaped injury, and pray for the swift recovery of his driver who
was wounded. May God bring healing to all victims of violence, and
may we never forget those who have given their lives in the search
for peace. We urge our churches to condemn violence whenever and
wherever it occurs.
During our time together this week we have valued the opportunities
to complement the global inputs by sharing our local perspectives and
initiatives in our provinces. We are exploring ways to increase
communication regarding specific challenges and opportunities for solidarity.
During the meeting, alliances were strengthened and plans were made
for addressing specific concerns. For example, the representatives
from the Nippon Sei Ko Kai and the Anglican Church of Korea invited
colleagues to share their opposition to militarisation in the region
during the Japan Peace Week and a Peace Conference in Okinawa in June
2010 (continuing the focus of the TOPIK, or Towards Peace in Korea,
consultation in Seoul in 2007). The African delegates shared their
intention to bring APJN matters to the next meeting of the Council of
Anglican Provinces in Africa (CAPA).
We hope many of our provinces will be able to send delegates to the
International Ecumenical Peace Convocation in Kingston, Jamaica,
17-25 May, 2011, a culmination of the WCC Decade to Overcome Violence
which will seek to strengthen churches' commitment to just peace and
processes of reconciliation.
We welcome the growing recognition by some of our speakers and other
contributors to the meeting that faith-based organisations can be
important partners in tackling some of the issues and situations they
address, not least because of their grassroots presence and knowledge
of the local community and context.
We recognise that the Anglican Communion has the potential to engage
more deeply with many human rights issues and challenges through
education, pastoral care and advocacy, and through appropriate
collaboration between the official Networks of the Communion and the
Anglican United Nations offices in New York and Geneva.
We celebrate the fact that several other official Anglican networks
sent representatives to be with us for this learning experience in
Geneva, including the International Anglican Women's Network,
Anglican Health Network, Anglican Indigenous Network, Anglican
Francophone Network, International Anglican Family Network, and the
Anglican Refugee and Migrant Network.
It was clear to us all that many issues of injustice and conflict
which are of shared concern among the Networks - as well as Anglican
leaders worldwide - are rooted in the poverty and economic
disparities that plague our world. Further conversation on this is
one of several goals lifted up for attention in the next few years.
Other subjects are a continuing examination of conflict and
post-conflict situations; the socio-economic impact of unjust or
irresponsible use of the earth's resources as well as inattention to
climate justice; human trafficking, and the plight of people on the move.
Recognising the great responsibility placed upon us by our provinces
and our Communion to serve God's mission by working toward peace and
abundant life for all God's people, we acknowledge with grateful
thanks the hard work and visionary leadership of so many persons who
have sustained the Anglican Peace and Justice Network for the past 25 years.
During the meeting in Geneva, we particularly remembered and
commemorated the life and witness of Luis Osorio Prado, former bishop
of Pelotas, dean of the Episcopal Anglican Church of Brazil's
seminary in Porto Alegre, and founding member of APJN, who died
21December 2009. May he rest in peace, and may God grant the gift of
peace to all in our beloved Communion.
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