As USA president Donald Trump met with Russian president Vladimir Putin on 16 July in Helsinki, Finland, they were sent a prominent message of peace from Finn Church Aid (FCA) and the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland (ELCF).
A sign hanging on the side of the FCA and the ELCF headquarters - very close to where the Trump-Putin summit is occurring - reads: “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.” Taken from Matthew 5:9, the FCA and ELCF chose this these words to make known the church’s stance on society and decision-making.
“The mission of the church and Christians is to act for a better and fairer world, and to pray for the realization of all kinds of peace as a community,” said Laura Arikka, a programme executive of the ELCF. “It is also important to pray for those who have the opportunity to influence things locally and globally.”
FCA executive director Jouni Hemberg expressed the hope that every high-level meeting will remind us that people throughout the world have the right to live in peace.
"Peace is the foundation on which everything else is built,” Hemberg said. “It is up to all of us to promote peace and justice in this world.”
The text of the message can be seen as a blessing, prayer, or invitation, its creators said.