An international group of Christians have marked the eighth anniversary of the beginning of the war in Afghanistan by blockading a key military base while sharing holy communion.
Members of Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) blocked the main gate of Northwood base in Hertfordshire at 12.20pm today (7 October). They remained there for over an hour before being forcibly removed by police.
They invited soldiers and others employed at the base to join them in sharing the eucharist.
“We want to invite people to join us in stopping the bombing and join us at the Lord’s Table” explained David Moss, a pastor from Sacremento, California.
The group described their communion, Bible readings, music and nonviolent blockade as “a ritual of exorcism”.
Christians from several nations and denominations were involved in the action. CPT explained that their intention was “to bring forward the voices of the Afghan people, a majority of whom want the bombings to end and negotiations to start”.
Northwood is considered to play a central role in the planning of bombings in Afghanistan.
CPT aim to devote the same discipline and self-sacrifice to nonviolent peacemaking that armies devote to war. The organisation places violence-reduction teams in crisis situations and militarised areas around the world at the invitation of local peace and human rights workers.
They explain that CPT “embraces the vision of unarmed intervention waged by committed peacemakers ready to risk injury and death in bold attempts to transform lethal conflict through the nonviolent power of God’s truth and love”.