We are appalled that yet another attack targeted people during worship, a time of particular spiritual and physical vulnerability. No person, of any faith, should be fearful in their place of worship. We stand united, across religious, faith, and spiritual traditions against such violence and will continue our work to promote the light of interreligious cooperation instead of the deep darkness of interreligious hatred and violence.
We are reminded of the words of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., on the descending spiral of violence:
“The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral, begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy. Instead of diminishing evil, it multiplies it. Through violence, you may murder the liar, but you cannot murder the lie, nor establish the truth. Through violence, you may murder the hater, but you do not murder hate. In fact, violence merely increases hate. So it goes. Returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: Only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: Only love can do that.”
[From “Where Do We Go From Here?” as published in, Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community? (1967), p. 62.]
The work of interfaith cooperation and understanding is more important than ever, and we renew our commitment to advancing peace, justice, and love in our world.
Issued 23 April 2019