11 November 2016
US Presidential Election
The President and Vice-President of the Methodist Conference have released the following statement in response to this week's Presidential election.
The United States has chosen Donald Trump as its new President. Viewed from the United Kingdom, the campaign appeared more hard fought, bitter and divisive than ever before. The result will undoubtedly cause both great pain and great celebration throughout the United States and the wider world.
Many of the statements made by President-Elect Trump during the campaign will prompt grave concern. Much of what was said was profoundly at odds with the beliefs and values of our Church.
Our understanding of God's purpose is that all people are valued and should be treated with dignity and respect. This value is incompatible with the "off the cuff" comments made about women or in support of torture and mistreatment of prisoners; nor can it be reconciled with the more considered rhetoric directed at immigrants and people of different faiths.
The Churches view climate change as one of the greatest challenges facing humankind. Our brothers and sisters in Pacific Islands are already experiencing its consequences. We know that, even with the plans agreed at the Paris COP21 last year, many more people and species will be threatened. It is of profound concern that Mr Trump has indicated that he wishes to ignore the world's scientists and leaders, dismiss the threat of climate change and refuse to implement the Paris targets.
In a democratic society, votes bestow a right, and a responsibility, to govern. We respect and honour this, and recognise that we are all facing a new political landscape. The Methodist Church must always stand with our sisters and brothers in partner Churches as they seek to promote truth and justice, holding the new administration to account when necessary.
President-Elect Trump says that he will seek the common ground. We will pray for him and all who have the responsibility of leadership. We hope and desire that the United States will travel a peaceful, generous, faithful and just path.
We offer this prayer:
God of truth and justice,
We give you thanks for the peoples of the United States Of America;
and pray for Donald Trump, the Senate and Congress at a time of change and transition.
Grant to its leaders,
vision, wisdom and compassion.
To its people,
listening ears, generous hearts and a spirit of unity,
to the world,
a compelling vision of your kingdom that excites our imagination,
deepens our love,
and inspires us to build in every place communities of welcome that cast out division.
In Christ's name,
Revd Roger Walton and Rachel Lampard
President and Vice-President of the Methodist Conference