Syria, Christians, Prayer

There are simply no easy solutions in Syria. It is beyond upsetting to think of a government using chemical weapons on its own people. It DOES cry out for justice.

Yet, in the rush to judgment, there might be a need for some pause.

Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, gave this address to the House of Lords as they debated Syria and action on the part of the British government.

One key point:

But there is a further point, talking to a very senior Christian leader in the region yesterday, he said “intervention from abroad will declare open season on the Christian communities”. They have already been devastated, 2 million Christians in Iraq 12 years ago, less than half a million today. These are churches that don’t just go back to St Paul but, in the case of Damascus and Antioch, predate him. They will surely suffer terribly (as they already are) if action goes ahead. And that consequence has to be weighed against the consequences of inaction. In civil wars, those who are internal to the civil conflict fight for their lives, necessarily. Those who are external have a responsibility, if they get involved at all, to fight for the outcome, and that outcome must be one which improves the chances of long term peace and reconciliation. If we take action that diminishes the chance of peace and reconciliation, when inevitably a political solution has to be found, whether it’s near term or in the long term future, then we will have contributed to more killing and this war will be deeply unjust. –

This is a complex issue, which is why we don’t like to think about it. We’re not good with complex issues. We want simple solutions so we devise simple problems.

This is why we pray. We need to hear from heaven. But, by all means, let us pray.


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