A powerful message of peace
LWF General Secretary Junge congratulates church leaders in Ethiopia and Eritrea on peace agreement
(LWI) - The news of the peace agreement between Eritrea and Ethiopia is “a powerful message of peace to the world,” writes the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) General Secretary Rev. Dr Martin Junge in a letter to rev. Simon Ghebrekristos and Rev. Yonas Y. Dibisa, leaders of The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Eritrea and The Ethiopian Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus.
Offering congratulations on behalf of the communion of churches on the 9 July peace agreement between Eritrea and Ethiopia, he writes that the communion joins “you and your people in offering thanksgiving to God for the peace agreement that has been reached […] after almost two decades of war and closed borders. This comes as an answer to the prayers of people of God around the globe for many years.“
On 9 July 2018, the governments of Ethiopia and Eritrea signed a Joint Declaration of Peace and Friendship between Eritrea and Ethiopia, ending civil war, and opening diplomatic relations for the first time in two decades.
It comes like a gentle rain falling down on people around the world thirsting for a message of peace.
The news of the peace agreement sends a powerful message to the world at a time when there is a discussion of increased budgets for military expenses among powerful nations, Junge further writes. “It comes like a gentle rain falling down on people around the world thirsting for a message of peace. We can’t but join the words of the prophet Isaiah “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” (Isaiah 52:7)”
Offering gratitude for the vital role of the churches in the follow up of the agreement, the General Secretary writes, “We can only imagine the importance of the role of the churches to express this agreement in tangible ways, and pray for God’s ongoing guidance for the churches to offer their own contributions towards peace. Please let us know how the LWF communion can walk with you, as you walk the paths of peace among your people.”
LWF has member churches in Eritrea and Ethiopia. The LWF humanitarian programs in East Africa also support refugees who fled the conflict between the two countries.