Statement from Methodist Church,
Te Haahi Weteriana o Aotearoa New Zealand
20 March 2019
After the deaths of fifty people who were in the Al Noor Mosque and Linwood Islamic Centre at prayer on Friday, the Methodist Church joins in the grief of those who bear these losses directly, and in the public grief at this violence.
Spiritually we join in prayers for those who have died and join in mourning for their families and loved ones. We pray for the recovery of the injured who are in hospital care. We give thanks for medical, police and all other forms of support being marshalled and volunteered over the days of this tragedy.
We are aware that for many who bear these deaths New Zealand is a newer home which held the hope of being a safe haven from violence and bigotry. We as New Zealanders are shocked and deeply lamenting this assault on people of Islamic faith, and on the safety of Islamic communities.
We acknowledge with sadness the endeavours to draw attention to threats to the Islamic communities, spoken about by Islamic Women's Council spokesperson Anjum Rahman on Nine to Noon, and regret the inattention to these warnings.
During these days of burial we continue the vigil of prayers, mindful of this time of lent and repentance. For the days and weeks ahead we, as people of faith will turn to our Muslim communities to build relationships and bridge the divides of peoples and faiths.
Our hope is to find pathways of respect for differences of faith, ethnicity, history, culture – sharing what brought us here and opening ways to an inclusive future.
Rev. Setaita Taumoepeau K. Veikune
Methodist Church, Te Haahi Weteriana o Aotearoa New Zealand