WASHINGTON- On Friday, October 2, representatives from faith communities nationwide met with Reverend Joshua DuBois, director of the White House Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, to voice concern about the conflict in Sudan. Members of the Interfaith Sudan Working Group delivered a letter to President Obama, signed by 1,410 Christian, Jewish and Muslim clergy, including Seminarian Josh Ebener and Henry Karp from Davenport.
The letter emphasized the decades of war, famine, and marginalization inflicted upon the Sudanese, and urged the Obama Administration to:
· Continue efforts to enforce the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between North and South Sudan
· Work with the international community to bring lasting and sustainable peace to Darfur
· Ensure that the 2006 agreement in Eastern Sudan is upheld
The letter concluded with a message underscoring the group's diverse religious background, unity around Sudan and Darfur, and support for President Obama's international leadership on the issue.
Dr. Stephen Colecchi, director of the Office of International Justice and Peace for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops delivered the letter to Rev. DuBois. "When I delivered the letter to Rev. DuBois, I emphasized the support for Sudan that the faith community can offer. The letter signed by over 1,400 clergy underscores our commitment to working with President Obama to bring lasting and sustainable peace to Darfur and Sudan," Dr. Colecchi said.
During the meeting, the faith leaders asked Rev. DuBois to convey their message to President Obama that Sudan should be a priority for his administration. The group also asked administration officials to incorporate important policy recommendations from the Interfaith Sudan Working Group when they convene regular meetings prior to the 2010 Sudanese elections and 2011 referendum. Violence against women, which has been reported in staggering numbers recently, was also an area of concern for the faith leaders.
To view the letter, please visit: http://www.scribd.com/doc/20491444/Clergy-Letter-for-Moved-by-Faith.
Faith Leaders who attended the meeting:
· Ruth Messinger: President, American Jewish World Service
· Galen Carey: Director of Government Affairs, National Association of Evangelicals
· Reverend Gloria White-Hammond: AME Pastor; Co-Founder, My Sister's Keeper
· Alissa Karg: Deputy Regional Director for Africa, Lutheran World Relief
· Pastor Cindy Lapp: Representative, Mennonite Central Committee; Pastor Hyattsville
· Dr. Stephen Colecchi: Director, Office of International Justice and Peace, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops
· Bishop David Jones: Bishop, Virginia, Episcopal Church
· Imam Mohamed Magid: Vice President, Islamic Society of North America; Director, ADAM'S Center
· Archbishop Vicken Aykazian: Archbishop, Armenian Church of America.