Joint SCOBA Letter to President Clinton
Apr 6, 1999
Dear Mr. President,
We write to you today, sad and heavy of heart at the terrible destruction that has been unleashed against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. We pray to Almighty God that the military actions of NATO forces will cease immediately, making way for a just, peaceful, negotiated solution to the conflict.
As Orthodox Christian Hierarchs, we are deeply concerned that the power and strength of God-inspired reason and peaceful means of recourse have been abandoned in favor of military intervention. We are mindful of the painful truth that Serbian nationals and ethnic Albanians have engaged in mutual acts of destruction. We condemn these acts of evil barbarity on all sides of the complex issues that plague this sad region of Europe. However, we are also mindful of the millions of Orthodox Christians whose lives are now at risk from American and NATO weapons. As Americans, we are also deeply concerned for the lives of this nations noble sons and daughters, many of whom come from our parishes and communities, who are also now at great risk for their lives.
As members of the Standing Conference of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in America, we are opposed to the violence of war as a solution to political conflicts. We also note with sorrow, that the failure of diplomatic efforts has brought about the impotence of death and destruction unleashed in the name of finding a solution to death and destruction.
Our humanitarian relief agency the International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC) will continue to minister, as it has for several years now, to all who suffer the consequences of this tragic conflict, regardless of their religious, national, or ethnic origins.
We call upon your sense of justice and humanity to end this course of military action immediately for the good of our beloved nation and for the salvation of all innocent lives whose futures rest in the palm of your hand.
May the Lord enlighten and guide you and all who govern the United States of America.
Respectfully to you, and prayerfully before Almighty God,
+Archbishop SPYRIDON, Chairman
Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America
+Metropolitan PHILIP, Vice Chairman
Antiochian Orthodox Christian
Archdiocese of America
+Metropolitan JOSEPH, Secretary
Bulgarian Eastern Orthodox Church
+Metropolitan NICHOLAS of Amissos, Treasurer
American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox
Greek Catholic Diocese in the USA
Orthodox Church in America
Romanian Orthodox Archdiocese
in America and Canada
Serbian Orthodox Church
In the United States and Canada
+Protopresbyter Ilia Katre, Vicar General
Albanian Orthodox Diocese in America