21 April 2015
The United Reformed Church grieves the loss of life on Mediterranean boat disaster
As many as 800 people have now been confirmed dead following the capsizing of a vessel carrying hundreds of migrants just outside Libyan waters. Rescue efforts are still underway and so far 27 survivors have been found, with many more feared dead.
Reacting to this tragedy, the general secretary of the United Reformed Church, the Revd John Proctor, and the Revd David Grosch-Miller, moderator of the General Assembly of the URC, have issued the following statement:
"The United Reformed Church grieves with many around Europe and the wider world at this tragic and large-scale loss of life. We were among voices to speak last November against the ending of the Mare Nostrum rescue operation, and we speak again in the name of mercy and humanity for a more concerted and active effort on Europe's part to protect the lives of refugees who take this dangerous route across the sea.
"We also lift our prayers of lament and distress, with those of Christians from the Coptic and Ethiopian Orthodox churches, at new reports today of Christians being executed in Libya.
"This is God's world, in which all human life matters. As followers of Jesus Christ, we will pray, speak and act for the vulnerable."
For further media information please contact:
Press and media officer
United Reformed Church House
86 Tavistock Place, London WC1H 9RT
T: 020 7520 2715