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United Methodist Council of Bishops Resolution on the Iraq War

Whereas, the Council of Bishops of the United Methodist Church, meeting Nov. 9 at Lake Junaluska, N.C., is committed to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world; and

Whereas, the Lord Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace, calls his followers to be peacemakers (Matt. 5:9); and

Whereas, "We believe war is incompatible with the teachings and example of Christ" (Book of Discipline 2004, Par. 165.C); and

Whereas, the cost of the war in Iraq as of Nov. 7, 2007 has been the lives of 3,843 members of the U.S. military, 171 members of the United Kingdom military, 132 members of the other Coalition military, 28,385 U.S. military wounded, and the lives of at least 76,241 Iraqi civilians; and

Whereas the war in Iraq has displaced 2 million persons and forced another 2 million persons into refugee status;

Whereas, every day the war continues more soldiers and innocent civilians are killed with no end in sight to the violence, bloodshed and carnage;

NOW, THEREFORE, THE COUNCIL OF BISHOPS calls on the President and Congress of the United States and the leaders of all the nations in the Coalition Forces:

  • To begin immediately a safe and full withdrawal of all military personnel from Iraq, with no additional troops deployed;
  • To declare that there will be no permanent military bases in Iraq;
  • To increase support for veterans of the Iraq war and all wars;
  • To initiate and give strong support to a plan for the reconstruction of Iraq, with high priority given to the humanitarian and social needs of the Iraqi people, such as healthcare, education and housing;

FURTHER, THE COUNCIL OF BISHOPS calls United Methodist people throughout the world:

  • To pray for peace and to have regular prayer vigils for congregations and communities;
  • To care for all impacted by the war, including combatants and noncombatants by honoring the dead, healing the wounded and calling for the end of the war;
  • To be peacemakers by word and deed that we may be called the children of God.


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