“Indeed, the fundamental basis of international humanitarian and human rights law – and the UN Charter itself – has been challenged and undermined by this illegal armed aggression against the people and sovereign state of Ukraine by a permanent member of the UN Security Council,” reads the message. “The World Council of Churches denounces the ongoing invasion and all of its tragic and unconscionable consequences.”
The message also notes that there can be no legitimate political, moral, or religious justification for such wholesale destruction of lives, livelihoods, and communities. “We particularly reject any misuse of theology and religious authority that seeks to justify it,” reads the message. “Our God is a God of peace, not of war; of love, not of hate; of reconciliation and unity, not of confrontation and division.”
Christians are called in this and every context to be peacemakers, the message continues.
“On this sombre anniversary, we pray that even after so much brutal violence, peace may yet spring anew for the people of Ukraine and the region, that the bereaved may be consoled, the injured healed, destroyed communities restored, Ukraine’s territorial integrity and internationally-recognized borders respected, and that those whose actions unleashed this disaster upon Ukraine and the world will finally be held accountable,” the message concludes. “The WCC calls for the cessation of war, the restoration of peace and international law, and the building of human community not only in Ukraine but in all places of violence, conflicts, and struggles in the world.”