Following the statement from Bishop Mone, President of Scotland's leading International Aid Agency, S.C.IA.F., who called for a greater effort from the international community to assist in the search for peace, Archbishop O'Brien and Archbishop Conti meeting on 11th April as the Standing Committee of the Bishops' Conference of Scotland, issued the following Statement:
The Bishops' Conference of Scotland joins all those around the world who can only look on with horror at events unravelling in Israel and Palestine. Not without reason is the region called The Holy Land. It is sacred to the three great traditions of the Children of Abraham who are now locked in conflict.
The violence now seems to have a life of its own, whether the desperate fanaticism of suicide bombers or the fearful oppression of the modern military machine. This living violence begets itself, bringing death and suffering for many without any sign of resolution. It seems pointless to plead and perhaps too easy to condemn from a distance. But at some point, normal life must begin again; Israeli and Palestinian must co-exist. The international community recognizes the need to find political solutions and stands ready to help. Strangely, there has rarely been a more opportune time for peace.
We can only express our earnest hope that the violence should cease. We send our prayers and sympathies to all those who suffer and grieve. In the name of that God we all revere as a God of Peace, we implore those involved to search for constructive and reconciling ways of true peace, which can never come through violence.
In union with Pope John Paul II, we ask all people of goodwill in Scotland to unite in prayers for peace at this time in an hour that is so serious for the whole of humanity. In this way a message of stable and lasting peace may reach that land that is dear to the faithful of the three monotheistic religions.
Archbishop Keith Patrick O'Brien.
President Archbishop Mario Conti.
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