Statement on Ukraine/Russia

The Management Team of the World Methodist Council, meeting in Cape
Town, South Africa, on March 11 th /12 th , has noted with deep concern the second
anniversary of the war initiated by an unprovoked attack on Ukraine by Russia
in February 2022.

Recognising that the history of the region is long and complex, and that nothing
but suffering and destruction can be achieved by armed conflict, we call for an
immediate cessation of fighting and the withdrawal from occupied territory.
We further note with concern that the ongoing war continues to cause food
deprivation in parts of the world which have been heavily dependent on grain
from Ukraine for survival.

The Team remembers that there are Methodist and other Christians on each side
in this conflict and prays that they may be blessed as peace-makers.

We ask for prayer for ‘the people called Methodist’ and others in the region, for
Bishop Eduard Khegay of the Eurasia Episcopal Area of the United Methodist
Church, for Bishop Christian Alsted of the Nordic and Baltic Episcopal Area as
he travels to and from Ukraine and for all local and regional church leaders as
they minister against this backdrop of war.

Statement on the situation in the Middle East

The Management Team of the World Methodist Council, meeting in Cape
Town, South Africa, on March 11th/12 th , calls on Methodists world-wide to join
in prayer for the people of Gaza, the occupied Palestinian territories and Israel
at this time of unprecedented and deepening crisis.

We condemn unequivocally the indiscriminate killing by Hamas of innocent
Israeli civilians and the taking of hostages, men, women and children, which
has precipitated the current situation. We are appalled by the killing of
thousands of innocent civilians in Gaza in the continued and intensive bombing
of the enclave and its cities by Israeli forces. While affirming the right of the
State of Israel to defend itself, we urge the immediate recognition of
international law in respect of civilian populations and occupied territories.

We join the many calls for an immediate cessation of hostilities in order that
adequate humanitarian aid may reach the people of Gaza who are without
power, water, food and medical supplies and are living in increasingly desperate
conditions, now amounting to famine.

Ps 130.1 Out of the depths we cry to you, O Lord; O Lord, hear our voice.