CPT INTERNATIONAL: Train with CPT – Join CPT’s Peacemaker Corps

March 2, 2017
CPT INTERNATIONAL: Train with CPT – Join CPT’s Peacemaker Corps 



Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) is currently accepting applications for its Peacemaker Corps.  Join us in building partnerships to transform violence and oppression!  

Applicants must be 21 years of age or older and have completed, or plan to complete, a short-term CPT Delegation or internship.  Qualified applicants may be invited to participate in CPT’s intensive, month-long training from 13 July – 13 August 2017 in Chicago, Illinois USA where membership in the Peacemaker Corps is discerned.  Trained Peacemaker Corps members are then eligible to apply for open positions on CPT teams.  

CPT builds partnerships to transform violence and oppression in situations of lethal conflict around the world.  We are committed to work and relationships that: 1) honor and reflect the presence of faith and spirituality, 2) strengthen grassroots initiatives, 3) transform structures of domination and oppression, and 4) embody creative nonviolence and liberating love. 

CPT understands violence to be rooted in systemic structures of oppression.  We are committed to undoing oppressions within our own lives and in the policies and practices of our organization.   

CPT is a Christian-identified organization with multi-faith/spiritually diverse membership.  We seek individuals who are capable, responsible and rooted in faith/spirituality to work for peace as members of violence-reduction teams trained in the disciplines of nonviolence.  We are committed to building a Peacemaker Corps that reflects the rich diversity of the human family in ability, age, class, ethnicity, gender identity, language, national origin, race and sexual orientation. 

APPLICATION DEADLINE: 15 March 2017; direct any questions and send complete application to

COLOMBIA: Women’s Popular Organization denounces threats by paramilitary groups

The life and safety of Iris Paola Sánchez is at risk from armed groups and the Colombian authorities are not stepping up to protect her or other members of the Women’s Popular Organization (OFP), whom CPT-Colombia accompanies.

The extensive work of defending human rights carried out by the Women’s Popular Organization (OFP) is built on their almost half a century of experience in Colombia. Their commitment and professionalism has transformed them into one of the key human rights organizations in the region.   Their work has resulted in threats and direct attacks on their physical, psychological and spiritual integrity as well as the safety of their close relatives.

Prayers for Peacemakers 6 March 2018 Colombia

Prayers for Peacemakers 6 March 2018   Colombia

Pray for the sons and daughters of campesinxs in Colombia, who are so young and yet know the taste of injustice‑-girls and boys who should only be worried about going to school and planning their future, but instead are worried if their parents will have enough to feed them. May these children become women and men willing to fight for their rights and have the hope and wisdom to resist peacefully the powers that oppress their families.

Sandro is ten years old and lives in the farming, or campesinx, community of El Guayabo. He loves to wake up early and milk the cows with his dad. His family’s farm is where he used to spend his days playing while his mother prepared lunch, his father worked the land and his younger sister played with her dog, Esnou.

Late last year, Sandro witnessed the destruction of their farm. He watched the police from Puerto Wilches take an illegal action and demolish the farmhouse where he spent his afternoons.

When he was nine he learned about the persecution of campesinxs in Colombia. He was separated from his dad, Erik Payares, for six months.   His father had to flee El Guayabo due to a false accusation that resulted in an arrest warrant. Sandro learned that the government sides with those who have money and learned that human justice fails.

Left: Remains of Sandro’s family farm house after the eviction raid on December 13, 2017. Photo: Caldwell Manners/ECAP

Right: Sandro Jimenez explains his understanding of the earth and why he thinks his corner of the world is beautiful. Photo: Caldwell Manners/ECAP 


Sandro Jiménez and CPTer Carolina Gouveia chat on the banks of the Magdalena river about the recent eviction his family experienced on December 13, 2017 in El Guayabo. Caldwell Manners/CPT

He has died,
they have told me he has died,
He has died,
I saw him, he is dead,
He has died,
And with him, we have died,
He has died,
And with him our hopes
Have died,
And with him our liberation
Has died,
And with him the light has gone out,
He has died,
And he has left us alone in the darkness,
He has died,
And with him everything is gone… including my life.

But what happened?


Prayers for Peacemakers, 31 January 2018 Colombia

Prayers for Peacemakers, 31 January 2018    Colombia

Pray for the sustained courage and creativity of Colombian communities who assume risk and judicial persecution for taking bold and direct actions that speak truth to power.

Land inequality is at the center of the Colombian conflict. According to Oxfam’s latest report, 99% of the population uses 20% of land, while the elite 1% controls 80%. These historical patterns of forced displacement and land control via the use of illegal armed groups or corrupt government mechanisms have solidified the lack of access to land for the poorest, most disenfranchised Colombians.

 Running parallel to these statistics of structural violence are stories of bold nonviolent direct actions. The farming communities Las Pavas and El Guayabo, both accompanied by CPT Colombia have taken direct actions to highlight the government’s abandonment of their legal processes and to demand immediate action. Farmers in Las Pavas have begun to open up pathways to their farms from which they were displaced in 2012. In years past, they kept these paths hidden in an effort evade hostile attacks by armed security of palm oil company, Aportes San Isidro. On 12 January, the farmers of El Guayabo took a political action by taking back control of the 85 hectares of land from which they were evicted on December 13, 2017. Their act was not an act of vengeance against the land claimant, but a statement to call attention to the state. The farmers ask, “With advances in agrarian reform made during the peace agreement between the FARC and the government, how is it possible for the government to evict nine families for the benefit of one person?” 

A home and a plantain plantation destroyed during the 13 December 2017 eviction in El Guayabo. Photo: Caldwell Manners


Read: Communities in Colombia Face Ongoing Security Incidents

Prayers for Peacemakers, 27 December 2017 Colombia

Prayers for Peacemakers, 27 December 2017  Colombia


Pray for the families of El Guayabo, Colombia driven off their land by the municipal authorities of Puerto Wilches in a process riddled with legal irregularities.  A wealthy landowner, Rodrigo Lopez Henao, has harassed the families for years and the authorities have colluded with him, despite the rights of the families to remain on the land under Colombian law.

Campesinxs from El Guayabo were evicted from their lands in a procedure full of irregularities and state violence. No humanitarian 

aid was provided and their fundamental rights have been continuously violated. The community gathered to worship and reflect

around the parable of the unjust judge and the widow (Luke 18:1-8).

COLOMBIA: The role of gender in defending human rights

A mural in the OFP’s office. It says, “The capacity to dream has allowed us to raise our voices
to build… autonomy, leadership, peace, empowerment.”

From 7-14 October 2014, as a MCC Seed team we participated in a delegation with Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) in Barrancabermeja, Magdalena Medio. During the week we focused on the work of CREDHOS, the Regional Corporation for the Defense of Human Rights. During the delegation we learned about the implementation of the peace accords and the work of different organizations in Magdalena Medio, we visited rural and urban communities, and we talked with CPT about political advocacy and undoing oppressions.

Although we didn’t talk about it in most of the spaces, I felt that the topic of gender was very present during the week. In many of the spaces we listened to men speak about their context and their struggle to defend human rights. In one community that we visited, only male leaders spoke although there were also women present. In another community we met a very strong woman leader, but we also heard from a male leader who was opposed to her leadership. I would come out of these masculine spaces thinking a lot about the role of gender in the work of defending human rights.

COLOMBIA: Sixty farming families violently evicted from their lands in El Guayabo

On Wednesday, 13 December 2017, municipal authorities in Puerto Wilches evicted sixty farming families from the land they farm to ensure the food security of their families and the inhabitants of the township of El Guayabo.   Police violently displaced the community from eleven farms that they have been harvesting for thirty years, causing a humanitarian crisis.

Campesinx farmers observe while Mr. Lopez’s hired men destroy their house

COLOMBIA URGENT ACTION: Help us stop the imminent eviction of El Guayabo

13 December 2017
COLOMBIA URGENT ACTION: Help us stop the imminent eviction of El Guayabo

Dear CPT friends and community,

Earlier this year a municipal judge ordered the eviction of part of the land that the farmers of El Guayabo have cultivated for decades. The legal process, plagued by flaws and irregularities, including the judge exceeding his powers over the National Land Agency, will deliver a number of hectares to a single person who has never lived or cultivated these lands. This process violates the way land titles are awarded. The eviction, set for Wednesday, December 13 at 8:00 am, will leave 11 families without the source of their daily food violating the right to a decent life, the right to healthy food, the right to work. Likewise, it will put the children's right to education and health in jeopardy, since their families will not have the means to support themselves.

The municipal, departmental and the national governments have turned their backs on the community and have not foreseen emergency measures for this humanitarian crisis.

While the lawyers continue to try to postpone the eviction by legal means, we need to pressure the State to be present and guarantee the fundamental rights of all the people affected.

Dear CPT community, this is an emergency, the community of El Guayabo needs your support. We ask you to make your voice heard, amplifying the community's claim, calling and sending emails to the addresses and numbers that appear below, clearly indicating that the eviction must be postponed until the National Land Agency intervenes in the situation and continues with the legal procedures already in place. Also request that the corresponding humanitarian assistance be guaranteed, the government's indisputable responsibilities.

We also ask you to hold the peasants in your prayers and share this story with your community.

Thank for your support. Blessings,

Colombia Team.

Stiop eviction of El Guayabo

Prayers for Peacemakers, 22 November 2017

Prayers for Peacemakers, 22 November 2017

Prayer for the peace process to prevail in Colombia and for the full implementation of the agreed upon transitional justice.

This week we pray for the Colombian lawmakers who are responsible for putting the peace accords into action. Jeffrey Feltman, the United Nations (UN) Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, has expressed extreme concern for the future of peace in Colombia after his visit to the country last week. The transitional justice system was expected to begin in the next few months but has recently undergone amendments in Congress that would exclude politicians and businesses involved in war crimes from the truth commission. This decision will severely debilitate the original agreements and continue to re-victimize the victims of the conflict. The UN has stated clearly that "failure to comply with this essential commitment, after the surrender of weapons [by the FARC], would have very serious repercussions for the process and would not be understood or accepted by the international community."

Men in white peace shirts are watching on screen Colombian president shake hands with FARC leader
People joyously watch Colombian president Santos and leader of FARC Timochenko shake hands.