placeholder image

The World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit has expressed deep sorrow over the killing of three Israeli teenagers whose bodies were recovered on 30 June, Naftali Fraenkel, Gilad Shaar and Eyal Yifrah. “We pray for their families, all their friends and the extended community that grieves their loss,” he said in a pastoral letter issued on 1 July.

On behalf of the WCC, Tveit said, “I again express the sorrow we feel, a sorrow felt across national borders and differences in religion and culture, at the suffering and loss of life in Israel and Palestine.”

Tveit said that “no parent, of any creed or country, be it in Israel or Palestine, or in the neighbouring countries of Syria and Iraq, should have to experience such anguish. And yet the violence continues, with inadequate steps toward the resolution of conflict and the prevention of needless death.”

“Our heartfelt prayers are with all who are affected by the tragedy that has got the attention of the whole world, and we continue to pray for the establishment of peace with justice for all,” he added.

Read full text of the WCC general secretary’s pastoral letter

WCC member churches in the Middle East

Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel