Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them
be afraid. â€“ John 14:27
Today is the day. The
war with FARC-EP has ended. Peace is
On Thursday, August
25th, The Colombian Government and FARC-EP announced that they reached a peace
agreement. After over fifty years of armed conflict, they laid down their
weapons in an indefinite cease-fire. Generations of Colombians that have known only
war will now be given the opportunity to live in peace.
Today, Christian Peacemaker Teams celebrates alongside our
partners, who have worked so tirelessly for this day. These courageous women
and men worked and dreamed of peace when there was no glimpse of it. This
historic peace agreement was made possible by their tireless work.
We also recognize that in many ways the journey has just
started. The peace agreement, momentous in its scale, will take years of work.
It dares not only to end the war, but to change a culture of violence and
dismantle structures of death. The task of agrarian reform and restorative justice
are complicated tasks. Just these two points alone will take years of labor.
There are still challenges to overcome. We have seen a rise
and re-organizing of paramilitaries in the region where we work. Furthermore,
on 2 October, the country will vote in a â€śyesâ€ť/â€śnoâ€ť referendum to ratify the peace
agreements. At a national level, powerful people are already working to
convince the people to vote against the popular referendum. It will be
devastating for Colombia if the peace agreements do not pass. These are
forces rising to prevent a real peace from taking hold
However, we cannot be afraid. So today, we celebrate.
The war with FARC-EP has ended. Peace is possible.