8 April 2017
The churches in Europe grieve yet another indiscriminate deadly act of violence in one of our major cities. Yesterday in Stockholm, the attack left a reported four people dead and another 15 injured as a truck drove into a department store in the city’s busy shopping district.
The Conference of European Churches joins Swedish, European, and global church leaders in condemning this deadly act, which has disrupted the peace in Stockholm and left countless many grieving loss of life. Our prayers are with the people of Sweden, for those who rushed to help others, for the friends and family of those who have died, and for our members and partners in Sweden—the Church of Sweden, Uniting Church of Sweden, and the Christian Council of Sweden. Our prayers extend also to other CEC Member Churches with congregations in Sweden, all Christians, and people of other faiths, convictions, and goodwill in Sweden.
The Swedish Interreligious Council called for a peaceful response, “In our religion there is an ethic that stresses honesty, justice, the importance of caring for others and to strive for the common good. People with different religious affiliations have different beliefs, but are united in the pursuit of the good.”
In a public statement, the Archbishop of Sweden Antje Jackelén remarked, “Dismay, fear, anger, despair, sadness, restlessness – we can react in many different ways. But surely we have in common is that we want to search each other’s proximity, stand up for the good and resist evil.”
“The two great cities of the Baltic Sea–Stockholm and St. Petersburg–are united this week in grief caused by terrorist attacks maiming peaceful people,” said CEC General Secretary Fr Heikki Huttunen. “Let us pray for a unified response in building Europe to be a common, safe, and caring home for all its inhabitants.”
Churches throughout Sweden remain open for prayer and pastoral care.