Church leaders urge North's politicians not to take peace process achievements for granted

Church leaders urge North's politicians not to take peace process achievements for granted
Arlene Foster and Michelle O'Neill

Politicians must have the courage to put the most challenging issues at the centre of the negotiations, church leaders in the North warned.

Peace process gains of recent years should not be taken for granted, the heads of the Catholic, Church of Ireland, Methodist and Presbyterian congregations urged in a joint-statement.

They said the achievements of Northern Ireland's peace process should be protected.

"Not everything in this vision has yet been achieved as many of us had hoped, but the current circumstances provide an opportunity for each one of us to ask ourselves what we are doing to make it a reality and whether we have, perhaps, begun to take the progress of recent years for granted," the statement said.

"In any process of conflict resolution, we should be prepared to face setbacks and embrace these challenges as an opportunity to continue to learn from our mistakes, while working to put in place the necessary safeguards.

"A culture of blame will only trap us in an endless cycle of instability and insecurity."

The joint-statement was issued by Archbishop Richard Clarke, Church of Ireland Archbishop of Armagh; Archbishop Eamon Martin, Catholic Archbishop of Armagh; Bishop John McDowell, President of the Irish Council of Churches; Rev. Bill Mullally, President of the Methodist Church in Ireland and Rt. Rev Dr Frank Sellar, Moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland.

It added: "Our elected representatives need our support if they are to have the courage to put the most challenging issues at the centre of the current negotiations and take responsibility for finding lasting solutions.

"As Christians, we recognise the importance of supporting those in positions of political leadership through prayer and action."

More in this Section

60 years of policing cooperation with UK will ‘fall away’ after no-deal Brexit60 years of policing cooperation with UK will ‘fall away’ after no-deal Brexit

Stormont vacuum ‘a problem’ in fight against dissidents, PSNI chief warnsStormont vacuum ‘a problem’ in fight against dissidents, PSNI chief warns

Spike Island and Cliffs of Moher shortlisted for World's Best Attraction awardSpike Island and Cliffs of Moher shortlisted for World's Best Attraction award

All Together Now promoters 'truly sorry' for traffic chaos at festivalAll Together Now promoters 'truly sorry' for traffic chaos at festival


Lifestyle

Kylie Jenner’s best friend has teamed up with a global retailer on her first collection.Who is Anastasia Karanikolaou? The Instagram megastar who has just launched a fashion range

The trials and tribulations of bringing babies along for the ride.5 baby-friendly destinations for your first family holiday

Audrey's been sorting out Cork people for ages.Ask Audrey: 'There's a shortage of handsome, clean men, so I’m seeing a guy from Kanturk'

A beloved part of many an Irish childhood, the artist, author, and environmentalist Don Conroy tells Donal O’Keeffe why he loves his ‘abusive’ friend Dustin the Turkey, why big men hug him at festivals, and why he worries for Greta Thunberg.Art of the matter: Don Conroy on why he worries for Greta Thunberg

More From The Irish Examiner