Prayers for Peacemakers, 29 July 2017. URGENT PRAYER REQUEST FOR EL GUAYABO

Prayers for Peacemakers, 29 June 2017

Urgent Prayer Action: El Guayabo Eviction Order Set for July 5

Greetings from Christian Peacemaker Teams Colombia,

We are sending you this Urgent Prayer Action for the community of El Guayabo.  This is a community of 250 families that Christian Peacemaker Teams has accompanied since 2013.  For over 30 years approximately 60 families farm land neighbouring the community.  In the 1980's Octavio Lopez owned the land and after encountering economic problems he decided that he would leave the land to local families to use.  Thirty years later Rodrigo Lopez, a man claiming to be Octavio's son, wants to take the land from these families.  

Boy riding a bike through plantain field of El Guayabo 
                                                                                                                  Photo: Caldwell Manners

The community affirms that he has used violent armed groups to intimidate the families to leave.  But when this did not work he used his political influence to manipulate the judicial and political system in his favor.  Under Colombian law the El Guayabo families have earned the right to own the land for the years they have lived and worked on it.  After numerous attempts to evict the community, attempts that were successfully stopped by community lawyers, Lopez has succeed in finding a judge that would give him reason in spite of the overwhelming evidence to the contrary and several national government bodies who support the farming families right to the land.  El Guayabo's lawyers continue to file countersuits but have told us that an eviction on the 5th of July is most likely to happen.  

The judicial fight will not end but removing these families from their land will have devastating effects on them.  Lopez plans to destroy everything they have constructed and the legal battle to return to the land could take many years leaving the families without any source of income.  

A coalition of Colombian and international organizations accompany the El Guayabo families in their struggle for Justice.

We are reaching out to you to pray for the community of El Guayabo.  We believe that the power of prayer can transform the hearts and minds of the judge and officials in charge of the eviction and once again the eviction will be stopped.

Take action:

Please share this video message from Él Guayabo with your church and wider community as we seek to cover the Guayabo families in a cloke of Prayer.

Learn more about Guayabo:

  1. El Guayabo Will Not Give Up, CPT Colombia

  2. En El Guayabo, 120 Familias le Temen a Desalojos y a Amenazas, Verdad Abierta