While the international community banned torture through the International Bill of Human Rights in 1948, the practice continues worldwide.
"It is crucial for people of faith to remind the President that the United Methodist Book of Discipline clearly states that "the mistreatment or torture of persons by governments for any purpose violates Christian teaching and must be condemned and/or opposed by Christians and churches wherever and whenever it occurs," according to a statement from the United Methodist Church (UMC).
"Torture has to stop throughout the world, but the United States is unable to effectively lead the fight against such brutality until the U.S. has repented of engaging in actions of torture," states UMC.
Church leaders across the country have come out more aggressively this past year in urging their congregations to pressure the U.S. government to end torture on moral grounds.
"The church should be loyal to the deepest values of our country," said Dallas, Texas Rev. William McElvaney , professor emeritus at the Perkins School of Theology, speaking on the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. "No one relishes going up against the White House, but the church should be loyal to the deepest values of our country. And sometimes that means opposing the actions of a particular administration."