"As elected and consecrated bishops of the church, we repent of our complicity in what we believe to be the unjust and immoral invasion and occupation of Iraq. In the face of the United States Administration's rush toward military action based on misleading information, too many of us were silent. We confess our preoccupation with institutional enhancement and limited agendas while American men and women are sent to Iraq to kill and be killed, while thousands of Iraqi people needlessly suffer and die, while poverty increases and preventable diseases go untreated. Although we value the sacrifices of the men and women who serve in the military, we confess our betrayal of the scriptural and prophetic authority to warn the nations that true security lies not in weapons of war, but in enabling the poor, the vulnerable, the marginalized to flourish as beloved daughters and sons of God. We confess our failure to make disciples of Jesus Christ and to be a people who welcome and love all those for whom Christ died."I think their hearts are in the right place, but their heads are buried in the sand.
Rev. Donald Sensing of One Hand Clapping posted on this. He has a son in the Marines in Iraq, and I believe I know where his sympathies lie.
Anti-war activists and clergy alike have failed in their attempt to un-define the word "just". They say the war is "unjust", but fail to explain exactly why. They also fail to see much beyond the sand around their eyes.
Similar to the times prior to and during World War II when the church protested our and England's involvement - even while millions of Jews where being slaughtered, the Catholic Church was silent. Pacifism was a strong cause even after Pearl Harbor. Even as far back as the sinking of the Lusitania in World War I, clergy urged restraint because we hadn't been "attacked."
For the record, Bishop James A. Swanson, Jr. of the Holston Conference, the Conference of which my church is a member, is not one of the 96 Bishops who signed the letter.
UPDATE: (11/16/05) Rev. Sensing continues on a roll as he lays out all the facts on pre-war intelligence, justification for liberating Iraq, and WMD's as he defends the truth against those who want to Cook the War.