News letter – April 2020………………
Let us make our life anew in Christ...
Dearly beloved in Christ, I am sharing this message while the covid -19 continues its relentless spread across the world. Whatever measures taken by the government to contain the spread of the virus can become effective only if we as citizen do our part with a sense of responsibility. Therefore I humbly request all our believers to act in a responsible manner as we all go through the same experience; because acting wisely is also a way of witnessing to the God who created this world so wonderfully and wisely.
Though, we as the global Christian community go through the same so called locked door experience which is a First time experience for most of us, let us not forget that we share the life and experience of both Isrelites of exile in the Old Testament time and the Jesus’ community experience of the early church time in the New Testament. In the bible we read that when the Israelites were under exile, they had no temple to worship; but prophets like Ezekiel encouraged them to turn their hearts into temples and worship God. Similarly, after the death of Jesus, in fear of the religious and political leaders and the situation the disciples of Jesus stayed inside the upper room, keeping their doors locked. But the risen Christ Jesus was able to enter the room through the locked doors and appeared to his disciples and greeted them with the words of encouragement - peace be with you; also in the book of Acts we read that it was the homes of the believers that became the churches for the first century Christians to worship God.
Last year as a country and Christians, we experienced the power of darkness and death with the first Easter attack and this year too we experience the same but in a different scale as a world. All what had happened so far and is happening with regard to the covid -19 virus in the world gives us a strong reminder that there is a supernatural power beyond the effort, control and understanding of human. Therefore let us not lose our hope in the risen Lord, who entered the lives of all who were inside homes and rooms in fear and changed the life situation of all who were under exile. Life is in the hands of God. Let us be faithful to God even in the midst of deaths , defeats and destructions.
As you are well aware it is very much in doubt whether we can have the Easter service and other public worships during this month. Therefore, I earnestly encourage each one of you to find your own time for your personnal reading of the word of God and prayer.
by National Christian Council of Sri Lanka
Dearly beloved in Christ,
We have celebrated another Christmas, the incarnation of God in Christ, who took the human form, sacrificed himself to death on the cross and rose again, defeating the powers of death and destruction. He came so that all may have life, life in its fullness and life eternal. God in Christ throughout history has always displayed his unending concern for every human being, ensuring human dignity and affirming life for all.
The festivities of Christmas will soon fade away and the Presidential election is around the corner. The coming days could be characterized by violence, resulting in death, injury and destruction to property, campaigns and counter campaigns, arguments and counter arguments which could lead to unnecessary mudslinging, arrogance and display of brutal force.
We as Christians need to affirm that elections are an important mechanism in ensuring the participation of the people in the democratic arena, and is the duty and responsibility of every one to prayerfully exercise his franchise. It is the duty of every citizen to discern the signs of the time and cast his vote carefully, cautiously and with a sense of responsibility. No one should refrain from doing so. Hence we call upon everyone to vote on the election day.
Secondly, when making our choice, we need to be influenced by the values of our Gospel. Our choice has to be one that affirms the fullness of life to everyone, where every human being is respected, dignity ensured, and security assured. We should not be carried away by our individual interests, or groupish/clannish attitudes, but look to the welfare of every ordinary citizen in our country.
Thirdly, we need to always condemn all forms of violence and intimidation. Everyone must be free to make her/his choice. This is possible only if everyone has the views of all contenders. Therefore, the campaign must be fair and afford equal opportunity to all.
While urging to uphold the above, we would also like to remind our churches to be vigilant in your area of any violence or intimidation, which should be brought to the notice of the authorities concerned immediately. This is part of our Christian discipleship and obligation.
We urge all our congregations to pray for a peaceful election where democratic principles are upheld and pray for God’s guidance and blessing on whoever is elected so that our beloved country can experience justice, peace and fullness of life to all.
27th December 2014