WORLD CHURCH BODIES:
'HOLOCAUST OF AFRICA'
MUST BE REMEMBERED
Christian Post Reporter
Sat, Mar. 24 2007
09:21 AM ET
Ecumenical church leaders declared that the “holocaust of Africa” should not be forgotten during a gathering
to plan for the 200th anniversary of Britain’s
abolition of slavery.
global slave trade removed some of the most productive peoples in Africa, resulting in the
African holocaust,” stated a delegation representing the World Council of Churches (WCC), the World Alliance of Reformed
Churches (WARC) and the Council for World Mission (CWM).
Representatives of the church
bodies discussed how the effects of slavery remain today as seen through racism, economic exploitation and psychological damage
to the millions of Africans and their descendants.
Modern forms of slavery include
human trafficking, child labor, sex workers, and institutional racism.
“The ecumenical community
calls upon people and governments to rise up to their historical duty to recover and reclaim the divinity in all humanity
so that economic and racial justice prevails,” the church group stated.
“We further call upon
churches, governments and businesses who were unjustly enriched by the slave trade not only to repent but to demonstrate fruits
of that repentance.”
The ecumenical gathering was
held in Geneva Mar. 15-17 to plan on how to commemorate the
adoption of the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act of the British House of Commons on Mar. 25, 1807. Delegate members also discussed
ways to pass down the slave trade’s legacies including through education programs, international consultation and a
transatlantic boat trip to re-enact the journey of the slave.
One member – the Rev. Dr. Samuel Kobia, general
secretary of the World Council of Churches – sent a letter to U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair on Mar. 16 urging him to
lead Europe in admitting to its involvement in the slave trade and to give an “unambiguous apology" to people of African
The delegates concluded: "After
200 years, the time for talk is over; the poor of the world await urgent and just action."
Kingdom will observe the bicentennial anniversary of Britain’s
abolition of the slave trade on Sunday, Mar. 25