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Message of condolences following the assassination of pastors of the

06 November 2006

Joint letter sent to Bishop Dr Medardo Gómez, Iglesia Luterana Salvadoreña

Dear Reverend Bishop,

It is with deep distress and pain that we have learnt about the shameful assassination
of Francisco and Jesús de Carrillo, a couple who served as pastors of the
Salvadorian Lutheran Church, at the moment when they were leaving the church
of Montes de Pensbert where they were leading a worship service with the local
community.

As members of one body we feel in our own flesh the deep pain and the despair
caused by these violent killings. We humbly accept these feelings as one more
proof of our fragility as human beings, and of the deep links of solidarity and
mutuality that Christ creates within his universal church.

We are aware of the fact that unfortunately these cruel events have become a daily
occurrence in Salvadorian society, making human life increasingly precarious and
the population more vulnerable to becoming victims of such violence. Therefore,
we as ecumenical organizations linked to the Salvadorian Lutheran Church, want
to raise our voice in condemnation of these and all the killings that are extinguishing
the precious gift of life of men, women, youth and children in El Salvador.

We call upon the authorities to undertake a speedy and accurate investigation of
the facts and to bring those responsible to justice, thus avoiding that these acts
remain in impunity and that the social cohesion that should sustain every society
becomes further eroded.

We express our full solidarity with the bereaved of these pastors, calling on God
to grant them consolation and serenity in the midst of this difficult and painful
situation. We pray for the community in Jayaque, particularly for the two Lutheran
communities of Pan de Vida and Montes de Pensbert, so that they may work jointly
in creative and peaceful ways towards overcoming the violence that is spreading
in their midst. We pray for the Salvadorian Lutheran Church, for its pastors
and leadership, so that God grants peace and wisdom in these moments of pain
and indignation.

We are confident that the Salvadorian Lutheran Church will persevere in its witness
for reconciliation and peace and will neither get confused nor dragged down
by the spiral of violence that threatens to involve an ever-increasing section of the
Salvadorian society. Instead, the church will continue to raise its voice with prophetic
clarity, announcing with words and deeds the good news of Christ, who came
to bring life in abundance.

In Christ, who is the reason of our hope,

Dr. Guillermo Kerber
Programme Executive for Latin America and
the Caribbean
WCC-CCIA

Rev. Martin Junge
Secretary for Latin America and the Caribbean
Department of Mission and Development
Lutheran World Federation