WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Council of Bishops (COB) of The United Methodist Church has condemned the ongoing violence in the Middle East and has called for prayer and action.

In a statement released on October 9, 2023, COB President Thomas J. Bickerton urged all United Methodists to renew a deepened commitment to pray for those who have been injured, abducted, or killed, and to deepen our prayers for those who have suddenly lost a loved one.

“As a people who pray for and work toward peace, we in the United Methodist family are appalled, and dismayed by the animosities and inhumane actions undertaken by Hamas. The declaration of war on the part of Israel as a result is also deeply saddening,” the COB statement said.

Bishop Bickerton reminded the UMC about the Book of Resolutions (2016) which states clearly that, “We seek for all people in the Middle East region an end to military occupation, freedom from violence, and full respect for the human rights of all under international law.” 

Quoting the Prophet Isaiah, Bishop Bickerton remained hopeful to the future of peace and love for all of God’s children.

Click here to read the full statement from the COB.