Free Catholic Church of Europe Bishops Appeal for the Violent Riots in France to Cease

From: Old Catholic Church of Great Britain
Published: Tue Nov 08 2005

The bishops said church leaders were "deeply concerned" by the "acts of violence and destruction," during which "gangs of youths defy the police and provoke fear in the heart of the communities."

The statement was issued by The Most Reverend Archbishop Gary Beaver during a plenary assembly of the Old Catholic House of Bishops' assembly after repeated rioting has left schools, supermarkets, police stations and shops burned in suburbs outside of Paris, along with rioters shooting and wounding police officers and burning more than 1,400 vehicles.

The Free Catholic Church of Europe along with the Old Catholic Church of Great Britain has suggested that the French media avoid provoking the situation by discontinuing " Graphic Media images from fuelling contention between different faith groups of the population,"

Two Catholic churches were firebombed -- at Lens and Lievin in northern France -- while a parish presbytery was set alight in the southern town of Sete.

French newspapers reported a mosque had been evacuated near Paris after police fired a tear gas canister inside.

The riots have also been condemned by France's Union of Islamic Organizations. The group warned Muslims that they faced excommunication for "acts against private or public property or threatening loss of life."

However, the union also criticized failures in the "French model of integration" and said all Muslims had "a right to demand respect for person, dignity and convictions," and to work "for greater equality and social justice."

Archbishop Gary Beaver, made the statement that "Old Catholics could not remain unresponsive to the present acts of violence." And followed with "we want to appeal for peace and calm which will enable us all to analyze the root causes of this outbreak of rioting"

Company: Old Catholic Church of Great Britain
Contact Name: Media Officer
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Contact Phone: 447761055456

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