On 1 September 2011 Doug Pritchard retired from serving as one of two CPT Co-Directors. He was appointed, together with Carol Rose, in 2004 when CPT’s founding director Gene Stoltzfus retired.
Pritchard first became involved with CPT when he attended a 1990 CPT consultation with the Innu people regarding low level NATO flights over their traditional lands and joined the CPT Southern Ontario support group for the Innu. In 1995, he joined the CPT Steering Committee as a representative of the Mennonite Church and became CPT Canada Coordinator in 1997.
“In CPT I have had the opportunity to try to show a different face of Christ than that claimed by Emperor Constantine and the Crusaders, both ancient and modern,” said Pritchard in a parting letter to CPTers.
He added, “I feel that I was called by God into my work with CPT, and God has often spoken to me through the voice of Hedy Sawadsky. So I want to thank her as a holy provocateur and as a mentor. I was also freed and encouraged by my wife Jane to pursue this call, despite the risks and my many absences, and I thank her too.”
“[We] will miss Doug’s open heart and his nimble mind, his generous team work and his earnest endeavoring toward faithfulness,” said Rose in bidding farewell to Pritchard.
While Pritchard will continue as a Reservist in CPT, he plans to turn his primary energies towards “addressing the imminent crisis of global climate change and its threat to God’s good creation.”
We thank you, Doug, for your many years of service and leadership in CPT and wish you all good blessings on the journey ahead.
CPT is pleased to announce the appointment of Merwyn De Mello to serve as the organization’s new Co-Director along with Carol Rose.
De Mello brings a wide range of international and administrative experience to the position.
Growing up in Nairobi, Kenya and Mumbai, India, he served with Maryknoll, in Japan, as an immigrant rights advocate and community organizer to change policy for asylum seekers.
In Tanzania, he co-coordinated projects in thirteen refugee camps on Tanzania-Rwanda-Burundi borders and developed community education programs on advocacy and peacebuilding.
At the Institute of Peace, Leadership, and Governance in Mutare, Zimbabwe, he designed and taught courses in Transitional Justice and Trauma Healing, Peacebuilding, and provided coordination for peacebuilding strategy development in Harare, Zimbabwe.
More recently, in Mumbai, he coordinated programs for promoting honesty, transparency, and accountability in governance.
He currently works as the Recruitment Manager for Maryknoll Lay Missioners in New York, a job he will complete in December before assuming responsibilities with CPT in January 2012. He and his wife Kirstin plan to move to Chicago at that time.
De Mello writes, “I have a deep regard for the essence of CPT’s mission and vision – the nonviolent and compassionate witness to God’s love in solidarity with communities that bear the painful impact of physical and structural violence. My life and ministry continue to call me to be a humble testimony to nonviolent compassionate solidarity and it is no coincidence that the CPT Co-Director position came to my attention at this juncture.”