Photo: Albin Hillert/WCC

Photo: Albin Hillert/WCC

The World Council of Churches (WCC) condemns the vicious attack on worshippers in the Sunday Mass in the Roman Catholic cathedral on the southern Philippine island of Jolo.

Over a dozen people have been killed in two bomb blasts at the Roman Catholic Cathedral of Our Lady of Mount Carmel on the southern Philippine island of Jolo. Sunday's attacks claimed the lives of at least 15 civilians and five soldiers, police said, adding that 77 others were injured.

WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit expresses profound sorrow and offered condolences and prayers for the families of the victims, for the wounded and for all the people of Philippines. He encourages the people of Philippines to stand firm and united through the many trials and tribulations that continue to threaten.

Tveit said, “In the face of this brutality, the human family, all people of faith and of good will, must stand together to recommit to respecting and caring for one another, to protecting one another, and to preventing such violence."

The World Council of Churches appeals to President Rodrigo Duterte, religious leaders and to governments across the region “to act swiftly and boldly to safeguard the fundamental religious rights of worshippers of all faiths, to ensure security in the face of violence and to guarantee justice for all people. Places of worship representing many different faith traditions have been targets of violence by extremists. “

“In these difficult and challenging times”, Tveit added, “ the WCC calls particularly on religious and national leaders to support the people in Philippines as they affirm life and engage in countering negative trends through peaceful means, such as proactive engagement in dialogue and partnership between Christians and Muslims in Philippines and throughout the world.”

Statement of the Christian Conference of Asia (CCA) General Secretary on Bombing of Mount Carmel Cathedral in the Philippines

WCC member churches in Philippines