Shame on the Methodist Church

Dear Friends

Ten days ago, Born Free was informed that the meat of endangered sea turtles was to be served up at the Annual Conference of the Methodist Church in Fiji and that the Church had specifically applied to the authorities for permission to kill 3 marine turtles for this purpose.  I wrote to the World Church Organisation in the UK urging them not to carry through this action which would set an appalling example at a time when sea turtle populations are under threat globally, and specifically when the marine sea turtle populations around Fiji have reportedly fallen by 60% in the last 50 years.

Today, I received news that not 3 but up to 40 sea turtles were killed in relation to this Annual Conference.  It is illegal to catch turtles and offenders can face up to five years imprisonment or a US $20,000 fine.  I understand the authorities are investigating but the truth is the Church knew what they were doing and they should be deeply ashamed of the example they have set in Fiji and throughout the world. 

I have today written again to the World Church Organisation (who did not reply to my previous plea) asking them to clarify the situation and asking them to explain what action they would be taking in future. 

Eating turtle meat may be a tradition in Fiji but as Sri Sri Ravi Shankar said when I met him earlier in the year “Sometimes a tradition has to give way, particularly when it threatens the survival of species”.  It is a pity such words of wisdom have yet to reach the ears of the World Church Organisation.

Blogging off

Will

One Response to “Shame on the Methodist Church”

  1. Jonathan Says:

    I agree ; “shame on them”.

    It sounds more like a frenzied slaughter than a request for a traditional dish !

    If the day has come when even the World Church Organisation is unwilling to change an action, even when it knows that action taken will have damaging effects upon a species very survival, then this is indeed a sad day.