Scottish Christians to Say No to Nuclear Weapons

Christians from across Scotland will celebrate Pentecost this year with a prayer and hymn gathering at the Faslane nuclear weapons base as part of an ongoing church-wide effort against nuclear weapons.

Representatives from all the major denominations will gather together for 'Tongues of Fire' on Sunday 27 May to pray against the UK Government's decision to replace the Trident nuclear weapons system.

The church representatives will fix statements to the main gate at Faslane, on the Clyde in west Scotland, from church leaders in Scotland expressing their opposition to Trident.

The first statement will be the joint statement from the head of the Roman Catholic Church in Scotland, Cardinal Keith O'Brien, and the Moderator of the Church of Scotland, the Rt Rev Alan McDonald, to the Preparatory Committee of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty meeting in Vienna in April.

In the statement, the Church leaders said they were "deeply concerned" by the continued manufacture and modernisation of nuclear weapons and Trident renewal in particular, which they said was "contrary to international law" and "opposed by the majority of the people in Scotland".

"We consider these weapons of mass destruction to be immoral, inhumane, and contrary to the teachings of all the world's major faiths," they said.

They also warned that nuclear dangers and human insecurity would increase "if nuclear weapons continue to be treated by some countries as a currency of power or as if they were an indispensable part of defence for the foreseeable future".

Cardinal O'Brien and Rev McDonald have both appealed to the UK Government to commit to its obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and lead the way in disarming its nuclear arsenal.

The Pentecost event is part of a yearlong protest against Trident co-ordinated by Faslane 365.

The European Interfaith Walk for Peace will also arrive at Faslane on Whit Monday 28 May to demonstrate the opposition of people from all faiths to nuclear weapons.