World Council of Churches Office of Communication
Press Release
150 route de Ferney, P.O. Box 2100, 1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland
E-mail: media

11 September 2001

Message to the churches and people of the United States of America

World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary, Rev. Dr Konrad Raiser, on Tuesday 11 September sent the following message to the churches and people of the United States of America:

"News of the terrible tragedies in New York and Washington, D.C. has just arrived here in Geneva where the Executive Committee of the World Council of Churches (WCC) is currently meeting.

At their request and on their behalf, and for all our member churches around the world, I wish to express to the people of the United States, their churches and religious bodies, and to the president and other leaders of the nation, our profound shock and our heartfelt sympathy.

You are all in our prayers. We pray especially for the victims of these tragedies and for their families and loved ones. We pray for those providing emergency services. We pray for the leaders of your nation. May God give them courage and wisdom in this terrible hour. We fervently pray that this is the end of terror, and implore those responsible to desist from any further such acts of inhumanity.

Lord, have mercy; Christ, have mercy; Lord, have mercy. Amen.

Rev. Dr Konrad Raiser
General Secretary

Geneva, 11 September 2001"

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The World Council of Churches is a fellowship of churches, now 342, in more than 100 countries in all continents from virtually all Christian traditions. The Roman Catholic Church is not a member church but works cooperatively with the WCC. The highest governing body is the assembly, which meets approximately every seven years. The WCC was formally inaugurated in 1948 in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Its staff is headed by general secretary Konrad Raiser from the Evangelical Church in Germany.