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BWA Executive Committee Resolution 1937-06.1

10. Rumania

The General Secretary reported at length on the situation in Rumania, and the possibilities of action by this Executive. Dr. Gill added a few words of confirmation und supplement. The Committee appreciated the gravity of the issue, and (having referred the precise terms for scrutiny by a Sub-Committee which
reported after the lunch interval) unanimously adopted the following three resolutions: —


The Executive Committee of the Baptist World Alliance representing the Baptist communion throughout the world, after full and careful consideration of the “Decision” No. 4781, dated 17th April 1937, and bearing the signature of the Minister of Cults and Arts in the Rumanian Government, finds that this “decision” is in its principle subversive of religious liberty as acknowledged in free and self-governing States and in the constitution of Rumania itself, and that its detailed provisions involve a systematic repression which destroys for Baptists and others freedom of worship, of preaching, and of organisation in accordance with the teachings of the New Testament.

In the name of the Baptist communion, including over twelve millions of communicant church members and representing a constituency of over forty million persons in sixty countries, the Committee expresses its deep regret that the Government of Rumania, a country towards which Baptists cherish sentiments of sincere goodwill, has adopted measures which it is compelled to characterise as reactionary and unjust.

The Committee approves the letter of protest and appeal, dated 31st May 1937, and forwarded to the Minister of Cults and Arts by the Administrative Committee of this Alliance, and now directs that a further statement he submitted by the President and General Secretary of the Alliance to the Minister-President, of the Royal Government of Rumania expressing the deep concern and distress which the “decision” has aroused among Baptists, and will assuredly arouse among lovers of Christian freedom in all countries.

The Committee would gladly avoid the necessity of entering into public controversy with the Government of Rumania, and therefore respectfully and earnestly appeals to that Government, and especially to Their Excellencies the Minister-President and the Minister of Cults and Arts, to withdraw the “decision.”


The Committee assures the Baptists in Rumania of the deep sympathy of their fellow-Baptists throughout the world, and of its firm resolve to extend them support by constant prayer and by sustained protest in the interests of justice and liberty.


This Committee authorises and instructs the General Secretary, in the event of the Rumanian Government continuing or developing a policy of repression, to communicate with the unions and conventions of Baptists in all countries calling attention to the situation in Rumania, and urging that they take suitable action in their respective countries (a) to make known the facts, (b) to promote a general protest and appeals to the Government of Rumania, and (c) to promote, if necessary, an appeal to the League of Nations.


BWA; Justice; League of Nations; Persecution; Religious Liberty; Rumania.


Original Source Bibliography: Baptist World Alliance: Minutes of Executive Committee Held at The Offices of the Alliance, London, on Tuesday, June 29th, 1937. London: Baptist World Alliance, 1937.
Original Source Footnote/Endnote: Baptist World Alliance: Minutes of Executive Committee Held at The Offices of the Alliance, London, on Tuesday, June 29th, 1937 (London: Baptist World Alliance, 1937), pp.6-7.
Online Document Full Citation: BWA Executive Committee Resolution 1937-06.1 Rumania;
In-text Online Document Citation: (BWA Executive Committee Resolution 1937-06.1).

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Since its formation in 1905, the Baptist World Alliance has networked the global Baptist family to impact the world for Christ with a commitment to strengthen worship, fellowship and unity; lead in mission and evangelism; respond to people in need through aid, relief, and community development; defend religious freedom, human rights, and justice; and advance theological reflection and leadership development.