'May God change hearts': Evangelical groups call on Christians to pray for peace in Korean Peninsula

ReutersBuses transporting South Korean participants for a reunion travel on the road leading to North Korea's Mount Kumgang resort in the demilitarized zone (DMZ) separating the two Koreas.

The World Evangelical Alliance (WEA), along with the World Council of Churches and the World Communion ofReformed Churches, have called on churches to observe tomorrow as 'Sunday of prayer for the peaceful reunification of the Korean Peninsula.'

The day of prayer, proposed by the bodies which say they represent over two billion Christians worldwide, marks the Sunday before Liberation Day when Koreans in the North and South celebrate their independence from Japan on August 15, 1945. It was also the day when the peninsula was divided.

Bishop Efraim Tendero, the secretary general of the WEA, said: 'Dialogue and understanding is the right and moral way forward as we uphold the dignity and great value of every people who bear the image of the God of Peace. On this Sunday of prayer, we bring before the Lord our plea for a peaceful resolution and the reunification of the Korean Peninsula. May God change hearts, may He change minds, and may He bring about unity in this land to the glory of His name.'

In February last year, participants of WEA's International Leadership Forum in Seoul visited the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea and offered a prayer for reconciliation and reunification.

The prayer reads:

In the spirit of reconciliation that Jesus entrusted to us, we pray for all the Korean people and the leaders of both governments that throughout this peninsula there will be peace and harmony.

All our nations bear the scars of history and strife of previous generations, which we all regret and none of us would have chosen. We want to be those who heal the wounds of the past and leave a lasting legacy of peace for our children and future generations.

We pray that the governments both in and outside the peninsula may be guided by God to undertake peacemaking initiatives in a spirit of mutual respect, not of condemnation. We commit ourselves to pray that the God of peace will be with all those who undertake these difficult tasks, which appear to be impossible in our own strength but with God's help we can achieve lasting peace.

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