Global Ministries supports peace talks between the Government of Colombia and the National Liberation Army
Various places around the world, October 1, 2017
JUAN MANUEL SANTOS CALDERÓN
President of Colombia
NICOLÁS RODRÍGUEZ BAUTISTA
Commander of the National Liberation Army - ELN
“It is the nature of the church to help on issues such as reconciliation, forgiveness and repentance. The churches in Colombia also have the support of the international community and I’m here representing this support from the World Council of Churches.”
-Rev. Olav Fykse Tveit, World Council of Churches (WCC)
“For decades Colombia has yearned for peace, but, as Jesus teaches, two sides approaching each other to dialogue is not enough; it has also been necessary to involve many more actors in this dialogue aimed at healing sins. “But if you are not listened to, take one or two others along with you.” (Mt. 18:16a)
"And forgive us of our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us." Matthew 6:12
How many times have I prayed these very words without realizing the magnitude of what they asked of God and for us as individuals. Many times, when I ask for forgiveness I am referring to those times when I have been selfish or when I have been insensitive towards others, but it was on this pilgrimage to Colombia that I finally came to a more profound appreciation for this prayer. It is one thing to forgive those who may have been selfish, insensitive or have lied, or even stolen, but it is quite another to forgive those who killed your loved ones - your father, mother, husband, brother, sister or child. Yet, this was the reality of what the Global Ministries delegation, which visited Colombia from May 16-22, witnessed as we sought to understand the peace process in Colombia.Read more
From May 16th to the 22nd, Global Ministries led a high level delegation to witness the ongoing peace process in Colombia. The delegation consisted of Rev. John Dorhauer, General Minister and President of the United Church of Christ, Tony Rodriguez, Moderator of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada, Nora Sanders, General Secretary of the United Church of Canada, Rev. Julia Brown Karimu, President of the Division of Overseas Ministries and Co-Executive of Global Ministries, Rev. Dr. Jim Moos, Executive Minister for Wider Church Ministries and Co-Executive of Global Ministries, Rev. Rick Spleth, Regional Minister for the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Indiana, Rev. Edward Davis, Conference Minister of the Southern Conference of the United Church of Christ, Rev. Angel Rivera-Agosto, Area Executive for Latin America and the Caribbean for Global Ministries, Rev. Jane Sullivan-Davis, Executive for Resource Development for Global Ministries, and Rev. Dr. Teresa Hord Owens, Nominee for General Minister and President of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).Read more
The CEDECOL Peace Commission has helped facilitate conversations between rebel groups and the Colombian government during peace negotiations. Additionally, the Peace Commission has been vital in passing along information about the peacemaking process to local communities and churches affected by the negotiations, as well as promoting peace in discussions with congregations and pastoral associations.Read more
Greetings from Bogotá. Writing this first newsletter of the year is a great chance for me to take stock of the past year and what I am looking forward to in the year to come. Let me start by thanking each of you for joining me in this journey and giving me support along the way.Read more
Global Ministries Partners in Colombia Celebrate Beginning of Peace Talks Between the ELN Guerrilla and the Government of Colombia
Building off the momentum of the recently signed peace accord with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), today the Government of Colombia kept moving toward the final goal of a stable and lasting peace. The National Liberation Army (ELN) guerrilla and the Colombian Government officially inaugurated their peace talks in Quito, Ecuador. This step came after three years of secret pre-talks, where they came to agreements on how the peace talks would work and an agenda of items to be negotiated.Read more
The Christian Centre for Justice, Peace and Nonviolent Action (Justapaz) seeks to embody and serve non-violence through programs working towards transforming Colombia into a just and peaceful state.Read more
The Inter-Ecclesial Dialogue for Peace -DiPaz- intervened in the plenary of the Senate of the Republic on the 29th of November, 2016, on the occasion of the debates that are carried out in the Congress and that seek the endorsement of the agreements of Havana between the National Government and the FARC- EP. The intervention of DiPaz in the framework of the debate of endorsement is represented in Jenny Neme, director of Justapaz.Read more
Lectionary Selection: Luke 23:33-43
Prayers for Colombia:
Today we come before you to lift up the country of Colombia and our partners in mission there. This is an exciting time in Colombia. After 52 years of war, the Colombian government and FARC rebels have recently signed a peace accord. We pray for peace in Colombia and we pray for violence to end all over the world.
Our Global Ministries partners, Justapaz - the Colombian Mennonite Center for Justice, Peace and Nonviolent Action and the Peace Commission of the Evangelical Council of Colombia have actively engaged with the peace process through the Interchurch Dialogue for Peace – DiPaz. We pray for Colombia's peacemakers, may you guide their work.
Christ, you were crucified with criminals at a place called Golgotha, the place of the skull, outside Jerusalem's walls. In death, as in life, you drew close to the outcasts of society, showing them transforming love and inviting them to join you in God’s kingdom. We thank you for the transformational, kingdom-building, peace-giving work of our partners in Colombia.
Help us to walk with them, the paths of peace. Amen.