Reiterating its call for a ceasefire in Gaza, the World Council of Churches has appealed to Christians everywhere to pray for peace and to advocate with their governments for a just peace in Israel and Palestine.
In a 7 January 2009 message directed to the Council member churches in the Middle East and shared with member churches around the world, the WCC general secretary the Rev Dr Samuel Kobia called "on Christians everywhere to pray for peace and, wherever possible, to inspire and encourage their leaders in the constructive work that leads beyond enmity to reconciliation".
Kobia reiterated the call "for an end to hostilities and a new commitment to a negotiated settlement that will assure a just and lasting peace to both Palestinians and Israelis".
Such a peace "must reinstate the ceasefire on both sides of the border and speed the lifting of Israel's blockade on Gaza," as well as "include respect by all authorities for international law as it applies to human rights, humanitarian aid and protection of civilians in conflict zones".
The WCC general secretary's message is a response to the calls and concerns of the patriarchs and heads of churches in Jerusalem about the current crisis in Gaza.
Full text of the WCC letter to member churches in the Middle East: http://www.oikoumene.org/?id=6547