4 October 2017

Liberia: Episcopal Church to Hold Peace Marathon Ahead of Elections

The St. Stephen Episcopal Church on 10th Street, Sinkor, Monrovia has organized a grand Peace Marathon to be held on Monday, October 9, a day before Liberia's much anticipated presidential and representative elections.

The Peace Marathon is expected to bring together members of the religious community, political leaders and ordinary citizens under the theme, "Peace Now, and Peace Always."

It is scheduled to commence at 8:30 a.m. from the Fish Market in Sinkor and end at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium in Monrovia.

The chairman of the Steering Committee, Edwin Zaladua, told the Daily Observer that the program is intended to emphasize the importance of holding a peaceful election and transition in the country.

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf; Unity Party standard bearer Joseph N. Boakai; Congress for Democratic Change standard bearer, George Weah; Liberty Party political leader Charles W. Brumskine; Movement for Economic Empowerment standard bearer, Dr. J. Mills Jones; Alternative National Congress standard bearer Alexander Cummings; All Liberian Party standard bearer Benoni Urey; and other political actors have been invited to participate in the marathon.

"Considering the intent and objective of our current electoral process, we at St. Stephen recognize that the church has a fundamental responsibility to ensure that we live in a peaceful country," Mr. Zaladua told this newspaper.

"The message that we want to proclaim is that all Liberians, regardless of our political, religious or social differences, must make it our duty to preserve the peace.

"Despite the level of peace we have been enjoying in our country for the past decade and a half, there still exists a fragile situation.

"The church will continue to demonstrate its commitment to playing a constructive role in the maintenance of peace and stability as we have done in the past.

"We are praying for a peaceful election and a peaceful transition. Our goal is to make the Christians' role visible when it comes to peace."

Members of the Muslim community have also been invited to participate in the Peace Marathon, he said.

"In the past, the church in Liberia, joined by our Muslim brothers and sisters, has been very vigorous in advocating peace. Many of the church's activities have been related to fast and prayer and negotiating with political leaders to maintain a peaceful country," the young church worker recalled.

He is, therefore, calling on all Christians, beginning with members of St. Stephen, all Muslims and adherents of other faiths "to come out and join en-masse in this Peace Marathon to accentuate and demonstrate our commitment to peaceful elections and a peaceful and orderly political transition in our country."

Drinking water as well as an ambulance will be provided for participants.

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