MCC Continues to monitor tragedy in the U.S.

Mennonite Central Committee
Friday, 14 September 2001

WINNIPEG, Man. Mennonite Central Committee continues to monitor the tragic events unfolding in the U.S. and search for an appropriate response.

"This is a tragedy of mammoth proportions," said Ken Reddig, executive director of MCC Manitoba. "We are appalled by the acts of terrorism that brought this about and our thoughts and prayers go out to the thousands of victims and their families."

However, given the expected outpouring of support from the U.S. government and others, it is not clear at this time what an appropriate MCC response would be, or if it is needed. MCC typically works with the poorest of the poor--the people "who fall through the cracks," said Reddig. After a disaster it usually takes time to figure out who these people are.

Reddig said MCC is concerned that people and governments will jump to conclusions as to who the perpetrators are, and act rashly. "People are afraid and there is a strong desire among some to retaliate. We pray that leaders will respond with wisdom and restraint."

There is also a fear that this tragedy will, in the end, promote a desire among some nations and people to isolate themselves from ongoing events in the world.

"We believe strongly in the importance of connecting with the world and affirming the humanity of all peoples. We believe it is the way to ensure security and justice for all."

Meanwhile, Mennonite Disaster Service--which typically responds to disasters in the U.S. and Canada-- is currently seeking guidance from emergency management personnel in the U.S. on how best to respond. It is not seeking volunteers at this time.

For more information, or to contact Mennonite Central Committee, see their website at: www.mcc.org

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