Public Witness

Prayers for Peacemakers 26 July 2018 Indigenous Peoples Solidarity

Prayers for Peacemakers  26 July 2018  Indigenous Peoples Solidarity

 

 

We mourn and pray for the migrant families entering the United States—many of whom are Indigenous— detained and separated as a result of the Trump administration’s inhumane immigration policies. 

 

From an Open Letter of the Union of British Colombia Indian Chiefs: “Our hearts break for the many Maya, Aztec, Zapotec, Olmec Indigenous children who are being jailed in child camps simply for traveling through their own traditional territories and those of their relatives. This is a violation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the denial of inherent Indigenous rights to the land that Indigenous peoples have inhabited since time immemorial.”  

 

We stand with the diversity of peoples around Turtle Island declaring #FamiliesBelongTogether as we’re reminded of the alarming rates of Indigenous children removed from their families in the name of child welfare and disproportionate rate of Indigenous youth incarcerated in Canada under the guise of justice and public safety.    

IRAQI KURDISTAN URGENT ACTION: Write email to the Turkish Embassy asking for safe evacuation of 450 civilians in Pishdar District

 

Turkey is bombing the Pishdar District of Iraqi Kurdistan.  The constant, heavy shelling has trapped approximately 400-450 civilians, women, children and men, who are unable to flee.  The assault has set surrounding fields on fire.

 Please call and send emails to the Turkish Consulate or Embassy in your country urging an immediate stop to the bombing and asking that the civilian population can evacuate the area to safety.

 Send this email:

 (Contact information provided below.)

CPT INTERNATIONAL: Take Action to Support Palestinian Human Rights – Don’t Buy Hewlett Packard (HP)

DID YOU KNOW about Hewlett Packard’s link to the Israeli Occupation? Join CPT’s online protest now! In solidarity with Palestinians, Christian Peacemaker Teams International is calling for a mass social media action starting today. Hewlett-Packard (HP) supplies the Israeli military with products that violate the human rights of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. Share this video on HP’s Facebook page and with your social networks. Copy & paste this sample letter to send your message to Hewlett-Packard:

Prayers for Peacemakers 13 June 2018 Palestine

Prayers for Peacemakers 13 June 2018  Palestine

#GreatReturnMarch in Al-Khalil (Hebron) on May 14th, supporting Gaza's protests for the right to return. 

Pray for the families, the friends, co-workers, and neighbours of the Palestinians killed during the March of Return.  Pray for the journalists and the medics who continue their work despite the uncertainty of safety and despite the sorrow over colleagues who were murdered. Pray for the human rights monitors who are beaten and threatened with death for exposing the crimes of the Israeli military. Pray for those who continue to march and continue to struggle for freedom and survival.

Pray for the world to see the atrocity of the occupation and demand justice. Pray for a free Palestine.

COLOMBIA PUBLIC WITNESS REFLECTION: Killing social leaders is massacring hope

CPTnet
17 February 2017
COLOMBIA PUBLIC WITNESS REFLECTION: Killing social leaders is massacring hope

by Salvador Castro 

Colombia is a country of diverse realities and of melancholic complexities, a place where violence has become a daily bread and the claws of criminal death constantly obscure the way. But, as an oasis in the desert, there exist men and women who refresh hopes and revive dignity and ability to smile again. 

These women and men emerge from communities that are tired of suffering, and being strongly and deeply rooted in the territory, they nourish joys and breathe a desire for freedom. These men and women with their strength and solidarity make the empire tremble, an empire that sends its jackals to devour us.

Salvador reading names of Social Leaders who have been killed

We, members of Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT), came together from different parts of the world as people of nonviolence to march and stand in act of solidarity and brotherhood with those 123 leaders who had been killed in the last year. With their lives and actions, these social leaders built paths of day-to-day peace. However, their steps were removed from the path, their voices silenced, their roots cut out and their lights extinguished.

But even when hope is weak it is difficult to kill it.

COLOMBIA PUBLIC WITNESS REFLECTION: Memory is resistance

CPTnet
10 February 2017
COLOMBIA PUBLIC WITNESS REFLECTION: Memory is resistance

 by Katherine Crosby

 

“In spite of all the persecution, today we are still here.”

                      ~ A Social Leader in Colombia

 

Our team arrived in Bogotá and has set up with cameras, hats, banners, drums, and megaphone. We begin our march toward the plaza at the center of the city. I am holding one side of a banner that reaches from above my head down to the ground; it stretches across about three feet to my companion holding the other side. I pause to examine the Colombia shaped black silhouette painted across the fabric. Inside of the map are several white dots of varying sizes, each placed in a different one of Colombia’s departments or provinces. The bold, black number on each dot represents how many social leaders and human rights defenders have been killed in each department since the beginning of 2016: 123 in total.

CPTers stand with a banner: Silencio es violencia

For the past three weeks, our group has been in Colombia as trainees with Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT).

Prayers for Peacemakers, November 2, 2016

Prayers for Peacemakers, November 2, 2016 

Give thanks for the world-wide solidarity the thousands of Indigenous Water Protectors in the Standing Rock encampments have aroused.  Pray for the healing of those brutalized by law enforcement officers this past weekend.  Pray that volunteers for the CPT – Indigenous Peoples Solidarity Team will become available to travel to Standing Rock, as the oppression of state actors and Dakota Access Pipeline security personnel becomes ever more violent.

*Epixel for Peacemakers  November 2, 2016 
Photo by Unicorn Riot
Hear a just cause, O LORD; attend to my cry; give ear to my prayer from lips free of deceit.
From you let my vindication come; let your eyes see the right…
Guard me as the apple of the eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings,
from the wicked who despoil me, my deadly enemies who surround me. Psalms 17:1-2, 8-9
*epixel: a snapshot-epistle to the churches related to and appearing  with a text from the upcoming Sunday's Revised Common Lectionary readings. Psalm 17:1-2, 8-9

CANADA: The testimony I could not give--CPTer David Milne’s statement against Canadian weapons trafficking


[Note: On 19 September, CPTer David Milne had charges dismissed related to his protest of the 25 May CANSEC weapons bazaar in Ottawa.  Below is the statement he did not get to make before the court.]

 “Your Worship, I plead not guilty to trespassing and creating a disturbance. I acknowledge that officers of the RCMP and the Ottawa police did warn me on three or more occasions between 10:30 a.m. and noon of May 25 that I should leave the lobby of the building with our banner ‘NO MORE ARMS DEALS’ or face criminal charges. An RCMP officer later warned me that if I continued to shout while in the lobby I would be charged with creating a disturbance. Nonetheless, I assert that my actions and those of my two colleagues were necessary to warn government officials and the Canadian public that continuing the traffic in arms recklessly endangers Canadian citizens and brings harm to foreign citizens. Arms sales do not protect us; they endanger us.

We chose this location, Your Worship, because this is where arms manufacturers and the representatives of foreign governments meet with Canadian government officials to make arms deals. We needed to bring our protest to the centre rather than remain on the periphery.

Prayers for Peacemakers, August 24, 2016 Indigenous Peoples' Solidarity

Prayers for Peacemakers,  August 24, 2016  Indigenous Peoples' Solidarity

Pray for the 3,000 indigenous protectors of the land and water at encampments in North Dakota who are preventing the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline.  The North Dakota Homeland Security Director has cut off their access to drinking water today. Pray that the media will cover their courageous nonviolent witness and that people will respond to their call to stand in solidarity with them.

*Epixel for Peacemakers  August 28, 2016 
  Photo by Unicorn Riot
Be appalled, O heavens, at this, be shocked, be utterly desolate, says the LORD,

for my people have committed two evils: they have forsaken me, the fountain of living water, and dug out cisterns for themselves,
cracked cisterns that can hold no water. Jeremiah 2:12-13
*epixel: a snapshot-epistle to the churches related to and appearing  with a text from the upcoming Sunday's Revised Common Lectionary readings.

CPT MEDITERRANEAN BLOG: Deep and violent connections


It’s a profound day today.

The celebration of Juneteenth (when Africans enslaved in the United States learned of their freedom, declared by the Emancipation Proclamation almost two years earlier). 

The one-year anniversary of the massacre of the church at Mother Emanuel AME folks in Charleston, SC.

The one-week anniversary of the Pulse Orlando club shooting. 

It’s also Father’s Day, so blessings to the Dads out there…especially those redefining traditional masculinity and providing open-minded and gentle ways of nurturing children (or ideas!) into wholeness. 

Tomorrow continues the meaningful days (of course every day we’re alive it’s meaningful!) It’s solstice, and the middle of Ramadan. It only comes around in the summer every 33 years.  Given global weirding, this is a hot one! 

It’s also World Refugee Day. Being here, working with refugees…this day now means more to me than ever before.  I knew theoretically the difficulty of being a refugee: the bureaucracy of paperwork and sometimes arbitrariness of official decisions, long lines, inadequate resources, the fast friendships, the cramped camps, the waiting, oh the waiting. 

Our Christian Peacemaker Team is accompanying refugees in Mytilene, Lesbos, Greece. As Executive Director I have a chance to do a two-week team visit. I sat across the table from a man from Afghanistan yesterday. Neither he nor I are from Greece or speak Greek. I don’t speak Dari yet, and he just began the English classes offered to refugees. We don’t know each other’s names and yet we are deeply and violently connected. My village paid for his village to be bombed (through the US-led war in Afghanistan).

We kind of smile at each other to acknowledge a greeting, but neither of us are happy about the situation so we exchange a glance of agreement that there is no use pretending we are. I can hope that through our work he and I can feel that there is another way to connect as well, through nonviolent interaction. But if it ends there it is not enough, in a way. I want to exchange the real smile that comes after a day of joint action to bring change to global functioning. Tomorrow is World Refugee Day and we will do a public witness action that reminds the public that refugees are not invisible, and mourns the loss of over 1,600 people that have died in crossing by boat from Turkey to Greece. We will thank the Lesbians for being so welcoming to those who made it, and together with them brainstorm ways to insure safe passage for all and challenge EU and US and local policies that lead to so many people being frighteningly expelled from their homes.