“Most important to us is to remind the WCC 11th Assembly that the current embargo on Cuba and Haiti must cease if we are sincere in our call for reconciliation,” said Rev. Karl Johnson, of the Jamaica Baptist Union, member of the WCC central committee and moderator of the discussion.
The group discussed their interpretation of the theme of the WCC 11th Assembly, “Christ’s love moves the world to reconciliation and unity.”
The group reaffirmed that the concept and context of reconciliation is important to Caribbean people, given the fact that their roots can be traced to every continent. “As Christians, reconciliation that is rooted in Christ must include work to repair the breaches: those that were inflicted emotionally, socially, geopolitically, and economically," said Johnson. “Repairing the breach to effect reconciliation involves interrogating the impact of COVID-19 pandemic in intensifying the gaps between north and south.”
Reconciliation also means examining the ways in which the church relates to the marginalized and vulnerable, as well as the poor and persons living with disability.
The group also called for providing resources to address issues of deep-rooted violence and self-hate; and for revisiting the matter of reparations.
“The member churches of the Caribbean are challenged to demonstrate a genuine commitment to reconciliation and Christian unity as they become more intentional in the pursuit of that transformational love demonstrated by Jesus,” said a report from the group. “From a regional perspective, we hold the concept and context of reconciliation most dearly.”
The group also recognized the need for a Caribbean pre-assembly which will offer an opportunity for reflection as they prepare for their engagement during the WCC 11th Assembly and post-assembly periods.
In a closing prayer, the group prayed: “Almighty and eternal God, draw our hearts to you, guide our minds, fill our imaginations, control our wills, so that we may be wholly yours, utterly dedicated to you; and then use us as you will and always to your glory and the welfare of your people.”