Cape Town Diocese responds to Christchurch killings

The Diocese of Cape Town have declared their solidarity with those affected by the recent attacks on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.

In a statement, the Diocese’s Standing Committee also called for “an end to such wanton acts of violence and senseless killing of others, whatever their creed, colour or political persuasion.”

The full text of the statement follows:

The Diocesan Standing Committee ( DSC) of the Diocese of Cape Town met on Saturday the 23rd March 2019 at St Paul’s Church, Bree Street, Cape Town.

The gathering expressed its support of the act of solidarity held on the steps of The Cathedral of St George the Martyr on the evening of Sunday 17th March in memory of the victims of the recent mosque attacks in Christchurch, New Zealand.

The candlelight vigil was led by Bishop Garth Counsell, Dean Michael Weeder and Sheikh Sa-Abdullah Khan. The vigil, largely a silent one – interspersed with prayers from the Koran and soft chants of lament for the dead – lasted for 50 minutes. Each minute served as a reminder of each person who died during the attack on the Al Noor and the Linwood Mosques in Christchurch.

The meeting noted the significance of its deliberations happening within the context of the Bo-Kaap, a place characterised by a history of deep social and familial ties between Muslims and Christians. These bonds of affection are best expressed in respectful and reciprocal acts of compassion and embrace when the need to be comforted is most evident.

The meeting expressed the prayerful hope that those who were killed during this most holy season of Lent would know the peace of eternity and that their families would find comfort in the way many in the global community chose to respond, in love, to their plight.

The members of Standing Committee further pledged their ongoing support and prayers for all affected and called for an end to such wanton acts of violence and senseless killing of others, whatever their creed, colour or political persuasion.

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