Disciples News Service

Statement of condolence for Istanbul, Cairo

Dec. 12, 2016

  Download PDF

It was with horror and sadness that we witnessed bomb attacks in Cairo and Istanbul this weekend.  We extend our deepest condolences and prayers to the families of those killed, and we fervently pray for the health and healing of the injured.  We offer our support and solidarity for communities in Egypt and Turkey, for the populations of Syria and Iraq, and for all people who live in the face of violence and fear everyday throughout the Middle East and beyond.

The terrible images of the aftermaths of the bomb explosions broadcast from the Butrosiyya Church adjacent to the Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in Cairo and from near a soccer stadium and a park in Istanbul are visual reminders of how humanity can destroy fellow human beings with their hopes and their aspirations in a moment.  We condemn these acts of violence, yearning for the day when violence will cease, and the realm of God’s peace and justice will prevail.

Both attacks seem to have communal or sectarian motivations.  Early indications are that the Istanbul attack was perpetrated by a Kurdish group; and while those responsible for the attack in Cairo have not been identified, the Christian community was clearly the target, and the venue was especially significant.  We pray for a day when all of God’s people can live without fear of each other, and that the great diversity of human communities—of religion, ethnicity, and race, among others—that God imagined is respected and celebrated—in the Middle East, in the United States, and around the world.

In this season of Advent, we nurture hope for peace with justice, experience God’s infinite grace and mercy for all people, and anticipate the day when “the wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them.”  (Isaiah 11:6)

Rev. Dr. John Dorhauer
General Minister and President
Rev. Dr. Sharon Watkins
General Minister and President
Rev. Dr. Traci Blackmon
Acting Executive Minister
Justice and Witness Ministries
Rev. Dr. Ron Degges
Disciples Home Missions
Rev. Dr. James Moos
Executive Minister, Wider Church Ministries
Co-Executive, Global Ministries
Rev. Julia Brown Karimu
President, Division of Overseas Ministries
Co-Executive, Global Ministries