This is the message proclaimed by 13 Christians leaders in a joint Easter statement released Wednesday. Among the signatories are the Latin patriarch of Jerusalem and the Franciscan custos of the Holy Land.
"Our message to you, whether near or far, is one of hope, encouragement and perseverance," the leaders wrote.
"We know the power of despair," they affirmed. "We know the power of evil. We know the power of the 'principalities and powers' of this world which promote agendas of division and oppression to bring harm to God's people throughout God's creation. [...]
"We also know the power of the Resurrection. We know the power of God to bring hope out of despair. [...] We know the power of God in Christ to confront those same 'principalities and powers' to promote faith, mutual respect, compassion and courage to speak the truth to benefit all of God's people."
The Christian leaders observed that every generation of believers has faced challenges.
"Our current generation is no different than those who have gone before us," they affirmed. "[...] The Christian Church faces struggles here in this land and yet we continue to be full of hope that we are at one and the same time the Church of Calvary and the Church of the Resurrection."
The signatories asked prayers "in our struggle for justice, peace and reconciliation, so that when Jesus returns he will not again weep for Jerusalem but share in our joy of unity, respect and love for all people in the Holy Land."
"Alleluia! Christ is risen," they concluded. "He is risen indeed. Alleluia!"
--- --- ---
On ZENIT's Web page:
Full text: www.zenit.org/article-28824?l=english