TODAY -

Church leaders join hands to pray for peace
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, August 23 2023: For the first time since the conflict erupted on May 3 in Manipur, Church leaders of various communities including Meitei, Naga and Kuki-Zo came together for a 3-day gathering at Guwahati.

The meeting from August 19 to 22 was convened by the Manipur Baptist Convention (MBC) and facilitated by the Council of Baptist Churches in North East India (CBCNEI) at its head office in Guwahati.

60 Church leaders of 29 associations under the MBC participated in the congregation and prayed for peace and justice to prevail across all ethnic communities.

MBC president Rev Mathotmi Vasha chaired the meeting.



Church leaders join hands to pray for peace
Church leaders join hands to pray for peace


This was the first meeting where all the major ethnic groups' Kuki, Meitei and Naga were together since the ethnic conflict erupted in Manipur on May 3, said the MBC in a statement.

On the first day, general secretary, MBC, Rev K Losii Mao exhorted that all are bound together in Lord Jesus Christ as one family irrespective of all the socio-political turmoil and troubles ravaging Manipur State currently.

The sole purpose of the gathering was to listen to the grieves, pains, and sorrows of one another brought about by the human-made disaster and seek God's mercy, he said.

The Reverend stated "When one part of the human body is injured, the whole body is affected.

Likewise, when one community is affected, the whole Manipur Baptist Convention is in deep sorrow.

"It is unity and love that has brought the various ethnic communities together.

It is made possible only through the sacrificial blood of Lord Jesus Christ.

If it were not the sacrificial love of Jesus Christ, we have no other hope for peace and healing," said Rev K Losii Mao.

Rev Dr Akheto Sumi, general secretary of CBCNEI led the devotional prayers and reflected from Paul's second letter to the Cornithians in the Bible--"We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed" .

He encouraged the participating Church leaders from various ethnic communities across Manipur that "even when we are bogged down in the depths of despair, we can look up to God who lifts us up" .

The Church leaders from the various ethnic communities narrated and shared their pain and sorrow they have been undergoing due to the social strife.

Many of the associations, including the Chongthu Baptist Churches Association, Kuki Baptist Convention, Meitei Baptist Association, and Vaiphei Baptist Churches Association said they are unable to function properly.

Some of them are functioning in temporary locations currently besides personal losses due to destruction of local Church buildings and properties.

However, despite all the pain, trouble and hardship, the Church leaders pledged that they remain united as one in Christ irrespective of whatever is going on in the State.

They pledged to continue to uphold each other through prayers and also through any physical and material assistance to one another.

The gathering concluded with prayers for peace and justice to prevail in the country and across all ethnic communities.


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