Greetings in the name of our Risen Lord Jesus Christ,
I am writing to express my deepest condolences and profound sorrow on behalf of the World Council of Churches (WCC) in response to the tragic incident that occurred in Qaraqosh, Iraq, on Tuesday night, where a joyous celebration turned into a devastating catastrophe.
We have learned with great sadness about the heartbreaking fire that erupted during a wedding in Qaraqosh, resulting in the loss of at least 94 precious lives and leaving over 100 persons injured. The news of this tragedy has deeply shaken our hearts, and our thoughts and prayers are with the families and communities affected by this terrible event. May our Risen Lord receive in His love all those who departed, and grant hope and patience to their parents and beloved ones.
The circumstances surrounding this incident are truly heart wrenching, and the pain and suffering endured by those present at the celebration are unimaginable. We want to extend our solidarity and support to Your Holiness and to all the faithful who are mourning the loss of their loved ones.
It is our hope that the injured recover swiftly and that our Lord Jesus Christ strengthen the affected families and console them during this difficult time.
We also call upon the authorities in Iraq to conduct a thorough investigation into this incident to determine the causes and ensure that such a devastating event does not happen again. Safety measures and accountability are of paramount importance to prevent such tragedies in the future.
Once again, please accept our deepest sympathies and condolences. Our thoughts and prayers to the Risen Lord are with the people of Qaraqosh and the entire Christian community in Iraq as they face this immense loss. We pray for strength, resilience, hope, and the power of faith in our Risen Lord to guide you through this challenging time.
In Christ our Risen Lord,
Rev. Prof. Dr Jerry Pillay
World Council of Churches