Church calls for prayer and restraint in wake of Nairobi massacre: The Church of England Newspaper, September 27, 2013 p 7. October 15, 2013Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Kenya, Church of England Newspaper, Terrorism.
Tags: al Shabaab, Eliud Wabukala, Nairobi
Kenya’s Christian and Muslim leaders have issued a united statement condemning the terror attack on the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, which has left at least sixty people dead including five Britons and a dozen other ex-pats.
Police report that approximately 15 terrorists of the Somali Islamist group Al-Shabaab attacked the upscale shopping mall in suburban Nairobi on 21 September 2013, spraying shoppers with automatic rifle fire. Some shoppers were taken hostage, eyewitness reported, and were released if they could recite the Shahada, the Islamic basic profession of belief, or if they converted to Islam. Those who could or would not were executed.
The Shabelle Media Network in Mogadishu reports that al-Shabaab has identified the names and nationalities of the killers. Three are listed as Americans, one Briton and a Finn amongst the Somali and Kenyan terrorists. Those who could or would not were executed.
Kenya’s inter-religious council responded to the attack by saying they would not let the massacre divide the country along sectarian lines, but would stand united against terrorism.
Reading the statement on behalf of the religious leaders, Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims Secretary General Adan Wachu said:m “We, the religious leaders, are engaged in robust dialogue to ensure that these relations are not just maintained but also made stronger. We are convinced beyond doubt that the attempt to sow seeds of discord between Muslims and Christians will fail miserably and that we shall remain united,.”
The Rt. Rev. Joel Waweru, Anglican Bishop of Nairobi urged Christians not to seek revenge. “We are so disheartened with whatever happened, but we would want to call upon our Christian brothers and sisters to keep peace and to maintain peace,” said Waweru.
The religious leaders statement said that one of the motives behind the attack was to destabilize the economy by driving away tourists. On Sunday the general secretary of the Gafcon movement, the Most Rev. Peter Jensen, Archbishop of Sydney released a video saying he was flying to Nairobi this week to review security arrangements for next month’s Gafcon Conference at All Saints Cathedral.
Dr. Jensen said it was his “desire” to “stand with our Kenyan brothers and sisters” in the face of terrorism, but he would nonetheless meet with local organizers to review security details and report back within the week.
Church leaders from around the world have offered their prayers and condolences to the families of the dead and injured and to the people of Kenya. In a note to the Archbishop of Kenya, the Most Rev. Thabo Makgoba, Archbishop of Cape Town wrote “to express not only that the Anglican Church of Southern Africa stands in solidarity with you at this time, but that we too share in the grief that this senseless attack has brought.”
“As you speak and act in response to these terrible events, may you be a channel of God’s grace: to comfort the bereaved, bind up the broken hearted, and proclaim the triumph of our Lord Jesus Christ over both evil and death,” Dr. Makgoba said.