Will feature all WSCF news articles on topic "Peace-Building, Dialogue and Interfaith" – currently under construction.

 

Cuba ha recibido una noticia impactante y estremecedora

castro

Cárdenas, 26 de noviembre de 2016



Cuba ha recibido una noticia impactante y estremecedora: ha muerto el líder histórico de la Revolución cubana, voz profética e incansable luchador por la justicia social.

El Movimiento Estudiantil Cristiano de Cuba y la Federación Universal de Movimientos Estudiantiles Cristianos para América Latina y el Caribe recibimos con profundo dolor y compromiso la pérdida física del Comandante en Jefe Fidel Castro Ruz. Para las juventudes en nuestro país y en nuestra región latinoamericana, Fidel ha sido y seguirá siendo un ejemplo de solidaridad, antimperialismo, lucha por la soberanía, la igualdad y la libertad del ser humano, opción por los más desfavorecidos, entrega por causas justas como el acceso a la educación, la salud y el bienestar social; todos estos, valores y principios que como cristianas y cristianos defendemos y promovemos en nuestros espacios y prácticas cotidianas.

Agradecemos a Dios por su vida y oramos para que su obra continúe siendo luz que inspire a estas y a las generaciones por venir. Nuestra juventud reafirma la responsabilidad de matener este legado, vivo aún en los esfuerzos de seguir construyendo el reino de Dios.





Dianet de la Caridad Martínez Valdés                                               Sarahí García Gómez

Presidenta del MEC de Cuba y Miembro                                      Presidenta de la FUMEC-ALC

  del Comité Ejecutivo de FUMEC

World religious leaders appealing to maintain the agreements and the peace-building progress in Colombia

 

sin-olvido-feature

Source: DiPaz Colombia

Countries from around the world, October 10, 2016

Sir

JUAN MANUEL SANTOS CALDERÓN

President of the Republic of Colombia

Bogotá

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God”(Matthew 5:9)

Letter from world religious leaders appealing to maintain the agreements and the peace-building progress in Colombia.

Greetings,

 

We, religious leaders from around the world, have been able to engage with communities and in particular with the victims of the armed conflict in Colombia for many years now. In the almost six years of the public and private dialogues between the Colombian government and the FARC-EP guerilla we have continuously been able to follow-up (with you, Mr. President, as well as with the guerrillas) in the critically difficult moments, but that always turned out well, supporting the process until the final agreement was reached.

These efforts, on your part, on the part of the FARC-EP guerrilla, on the part of the victims and on the part of the wide array of friends of peace in Colombia, led to you deservingly being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. As the Norwegian Nobel Committee stated, “The award should also be seen as a tribute to the Colombian people who, despite great hardships and abuses, have not given up hope of a just peace, and to all the parties who have contributed to the peace process.”

The massive demonstrations that are taking place in favor of peace in your country, in which people who abstained from participating are making themselves present, and are summoning the advocates for the “no”; confirms for us that the apparent position of the narrow majority in the plebiscite, is not the real position of most Colombians, especially when it comes to safeguarding the higher value of peace, in our countries and amongst our peoples.

These observations, Mr. President, and our deep conviction that God’s will is that we build peace and justice, call us to respectfully request that you not throw away the achievements of those difficult, intense and successful six years of dialogue. This same request is heard in the voice of the victims. The agreements that you fostered with conviction are the minimum that could be reached with the FARC-EP to begin the end of the longest conflict in the Western Hemisphere and the reconstruction of Colombia.

Therefore, Mr. President, we encourage you to maintain the agreements as signed, which, as in point five of the agreement on victims, are seen as balanced and guaranteeing the minimum conditions necessary for truth, justice, holistic reparations and guarantees of non-repetition of violent acts.

You see this time as an opportunity for a great political pact, just as is written into the section on Political Participation in the final agreement. Our faith also teaches us that “God writes straight on crooked lines” and is calling us to make our best efforts to ensure that what was agreed between the parties has the commitment of society, and primarily favors victims who have suffered directly from the armed conflict. In that sense, we are pleased with the announcement of the beginning of the public phase of peace dialogs

with the ELN and we hope that they may begin soon with the EPL as well.

Mr. President, count on our prayers and our willingness to continue to contribute as much as possible in building the stable and lasting peace for which this beautiful country is crying out.

Fraternally,

International Signatories

1. Rev. Chris Ferguson, General Secretary of the World Communion of Reformed Churches

2. Rev. Dr. Sharon Watkins, General Minister and President Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the U.S.A. and Canada, EE.UU.

3. Rev. Dr. John Dorhauer, General Minister and President United Church of Christ in the U.S.A., EE.UU.

4. Pbra. Berla Andrade de Vargas, Moderadora del Sínodo de la Iglesia Presbiteriana de Venezuela, Venezuela

5. Pbra. Catalina Charris, Moderadora del Presbiterio Central de la Iglesia Presbiteriana de Venezuela, Venezuela

6. Rev. María Jiménez de Ramirez, Pastora y Secretaria Ejecutiva del Presbiterio Central, Iglesia Presbiteriana de Venezuela, Coordinadora del departamento de Mujeres de AIPRAL, Venezuela

7. Josaphat Jarpa Ramírez, Coordinador del Movimiento Juntos con la Niñez y la Juventud, Iglesia Luterana de Chile, Chile

8. Rev. Gustavo Vásquez Paredes, Director de Comunicaciones Hispano/Latinas de la Iglesia Metodista Unida de USA, Pastor de la Iglesia Presbiteriana de USA, Estados Unidos

9. Pbro. Julio César González. Secretario Ejecutivo del Sínodo de la Iglesia Presbiteriana de Venezuela. Venezuela

10. Dr. Pastor Rafael Malpica Padilla, Director Ejecutivo de Misión Global de la Iglesia Evangélica Luterana en América (EE.UU).

11. Walter Altmann, ex-Pastor Presidente de la Iglesia Evangélica de Confesión Luterana en el Brasil, ex-Presidente del Consejo Latinoamericano de Iglesias y ex-Moderador del Comité Central del Consejo Mundial de Iglesias

12. Rvda. Gloria Ulloa, Presidenta del Consejo Mundial de Iglesias, América Latina.

13. Rvdo. Milton Mejía, Secretario General del Consejo Latinoamericano de Iglesias (CLAI)

14. Obispo Steven H. Delzer, Obispo del Sinodo Suroriental de Minnesota de la Iglesia Evangélica Luterana en América (EE.UU).

15. Rev. Raúl Suárez, Director Centro Memorial Martin Luther King, jr.Pastor Emérito Iglesia Bautista Ebenezer Marianao, La Habana, Cuba.

16. Joel Suárez, Coordinador General Centro Memorial Martin Luther King, Jr. Marianao, La Habana, Cuba.

17. Rev. Julia Brown Karimu, President, Division of Overseas Ministries Co-Executive, Global Ministries, EE.UU.

18. Rev. James Moos, Executive Minister, Wider Church Ministries Co-Executive, Global Ministries, EE.UU.

19. Rev. Angel L. Rivera-Agosto Area Executive for Latin America and the Caribbean Global Ministries, EE.UU.

20. Rev. Scott L. Stearman, Ph.D. Pastor / Metro Baptist Church Liaison / United Nations (Cooperative Baptist Fellowship) New York, NY, EE.UU.

21. Rev. Kristin Stoneking, Executive Director, Fellowship of Reconciliation, New York, EE.UU.

22. Rev. Dan González Ortega, Secretario Ejecutivo de la Comunidad de Educación Teológica Ecuménica y Latinoamericana (CETELA), México, D.F.

23. Rev. Dr. Carlos Emilio Ham-Stanard, Director Seminario Evangélico de Teología, Matanzas, Cuba.

24. Sister Marilyn Geiger, OSF, President of the Sisters of St. Francis, Rochester, Minnesota, USA

25. Dom Francsco de Assis- Bispo Primaz da Igreja Episcopal Anglicana do Brasil

26. César García, Secretario General Congreso Mundial Menonita, Bogotá, Colombia

27. Necta Monte, WSCF General Secretary

28. Georgine Kengne, WSCF Chairperson

29. Sunita Suna, WSCF Asia Pacific Executive Secretary

30. Natia Tsintsadze, WSCF Europe Region Executive Secretary

31. Marcelo Leites, WSCF (FUMEC) Latin America and the Caribbean Region Executive Secretary

32. Elsy Wakil, WSCF Middle East region Executive Secretary

33. Luciano Kovacs, WSCF North America Region Executive Secretary

34. Amos Mushendwa, WSCF Africa Region Executive Secretary

35. Conny Toornstra, Regional Manager Latin America, ICCO – Cooperation, La Paz, Bolivia

36. Bishop Elmer Bolocon, Executive Secretary Ecumenical Bishops’ Forum, Philippines

37. Hilton Deakin, Emeritus Bishop, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne, Australia

38. Sr. Marie Lucey, osf, Director of Advocacy and Member Relations Franciscan Action Network, Washington, DC

39. Sr. Arlene Ashack, IBVM, Director, Loretta Center

40. Rev. Dr. William M. Lyons, Conference Minister Southwest Conference United Methodist Church, Tucson, AZ

41. Father Claude Mostowik, MSC, President Pax Christi Australia; National Director Missionaries of the Sacred Heart Justice and Peace (Australian Province)

42. Pastor, Prof. Dr. Hans de Wit, Iglesia Protestante en Holanda y profesor de la facultad de teología de la Universidad Libre de Ámsterdam, Holanda

43. Raimundo C. Barreto, Jr., Ph.D. Assistant Professor of World Christianity Princeton Theological Seminary Princeton, NJ, EE.UU.

44. Humberto M. Shikiya, Director General del Centro Regional Ecuménico para Asesoría y Servicio, CREAS, Buenos Aires, Argentina

45. Gabriel Coderch Diaz, Director Centro Oscar Arnulfo Romero-Cuba (Oar), Cuba Maritza Maestre B., Coordinadora del Comité de Familiares de Asesinados y Desaparecidos de la Dictadura Militar en Panamá P. Héctor Gallego, COFADEPA-HG, Panamá

46. Armando Márquez Ochoa. Secretario General del Servicio Mude Solidaridad Oscar Romero SICSAL.

47. Emile Smith, Secretaria Ejecutiva Sicsal, Canadá

48. Bishop Kevin Dowling, Co-President, Pax Christi International, Washington, D.C., EE.UU.

49. Marie Dennis, Co-President, Pax Christi International, Washington, D.C., EE.UU.

50. Harold Segura, Compromisos Públicos – Relacionamiento con Iglesias y OBF´s, World Vision, América Latina y el Caribe, Costa Rica

51. Gary Cozette, Program Director, Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin American, Chicago, Illinois, EE.UU.

52. Sarah Thompson, MDiv. Directora Ejecutiva Equipos Cristianos de Acción por La Paz

53. Nicolás Panotto, Director del Grupo de Estudios Multidisciplinarios sobre Religión e Incidencia Pública (GEMRIP), Argentina.

54. Phil Glendenning, Director, Edmund Rice Centre, Sydney, Australia

55. Sean Cleary, Coordinator, Oscar Romero Network Australia – SICSAL, Brisbane, Australia

56. Sr. Joan Brown, osf, Executive Director New Mexico Interfaith Power and Light, EE.UU.

57. Christopher Emil Knestrick, M.A., Equipos Cristianos de Acción por La Paz, Coordinador de Apoyo – Proyecto Colombia, EE.UU.

58. Sr. Marlene Perrotte, rsm, Partnership for Earth Spirituality

59. Sister Marie Lucey OSF, Director of Advocacy and Member Relations, Franciscan Action Network, Washington, EE.UU.

60. Rev. Can. Cathlena A. Plummer, Canon for Communications

61. Hna. Patricia Farrell, OSF, Ex Presidenta de la Conferencia de Liderazgo de Mujeres Religiosas de Estados Unidos (LCWR), EE.UU.

62. Rev. Marma Urbano, US-based Secretariat, International Coalition for Human Rights and Peace in the Philippines, Filipinas.

63. Tom Vaughan, NMRM Friends Committee on National Legislation, Silver City, New Mexico

64. Justin Remer-Thamert, Director, New Mexico Faith Coalition for Immigrant Justice, Albuquerque, New Mexico, EE.UU.

65. Tobias Merckle, Director Ejecutivo de la Confraternidad Carcelaria de Alemania, Director del Programa APAC para Jóvenes Delincuentes.

66. Rev. Noel Angersen, Church World Service, United Church of Christ, EE.UU.

67. P. Conrado Sanjur, Coordinadora Popular de Derechos Humanos de Panamá, COPODEHUPA, Panamá

68. José Luis Gómez Morales, presidente del COMITÉ DE SOLIDARIDAD MONSEÑOR ÓSCAR ROMERO DE MADRID, España

69. Fermín Santórum Martínez- Presidente del Comité Óscar Romero de Valladolid, España

70. Roberto Danilo Puerto, Director Caritas Choluteca, Honduras

71. Gerardo dure, Coordinador, Comite Oscar Romero de Buenos Aires, Sicsal, Argentina

72. Lupo Canterac Troya, COORDINACION Red Regional agua, desarrollo y democracia (REDAD), Piura, Perú

73. Marco Arana Zegarra, Congresista de la Republica del Perú, Teólogo, educador y sociólogo, Perú

74. Teresa Subieta S. Delegada Defensorial del Pueblo, Departamento de la Paz, Bolivia

75. Oscar Esteban Jiménez Lazo, S.J., Comité O Romero, Sicsal, Chile

76. José Frias del Santo, Coordinación Nacional de Comité O Romero, Sicsal, Chile

77. Mercedes Toruño-fundadora y miembro de directiva de la Asociación Mary Barreda. León, Nicaragua

78. Arnaldo Zenteno S.J. Del Equipo Animador CEB, Managua, Nicaragua

79. Nidia Arrobo Rodas, Fundación Pueblo Indio del Ecuador

80. Emperatriz Montalvo Chuma, Fundación Pueblo Indio del Ecuador

81. Revda. Daylins Rufin Pardo, Fraternidad de Iglesias Bautistas de Cuba (FIBAC), Cuba

82. Rev. Luis Carlos Marrero Chasbar, Fraternidad de Iglesias Bautistas de Cuba (FIBAC), Cuba

83. Craig Mousin, Associate Pastor United Church of Christ, Chicago, Illinois, EE.UU.

84. Rev. Jose Luis Casal – General Missioner of Tres Rios Presbytery of Presbyterian Church USA, EE.UU.

85. Nicholas King, Pastor, Carlsbad Mennonite Church, Carlsbad, New Mexico, EE.UU.

86. Rev. Uriel Ramírez Benítez, Teólogo y pastor de la Iglesia Presbiteriana de Venezuela, Venezuela

87. Rev. Dr. Milton Núñez-Coba, Teólogo Iglesia Presbiteriana de USA, EE.UU.

88. Rev. Lilia María Ramírez Jiménez, Pastora de la Iglesia Presbiteriana de USA, EE.UU.

89. Rev. Miriam Zarahy Bracho Suárez, Pastora de la Iglesia Presbiteriana de Venezuela, Profesora universitaria de la Escuela de Trabajo Social de la Universidad del Zulia, Maracaibo, Venezuela

90. Rev. Susan Heyward United Church of Christ Washington, D.C., EE.UU.

91. Rev. Dr. Paul C. Hayes, Pastor Noank Baptist Church Noank, CT EE.UU.

92. Pastora Romi Márcia Bencke – IECLB/Conselho Nacional de Igrejas Cristãs do Brasil, Brasil

93. Sally Jane Gellert, Unitarian Universalist leader, Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey

94. Tom Kauffman, Transitional Pastor, Albuquerque Mennonite Church, EE.UU.

95. Sister Assunta M Riley, Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, Nashua, NH, EE.UU.

96. Sister Rosemary Burnham, RSM, Sisters of Mercy of the Americas NE Nashua, NH, EE.UU.

97. Sister Martha Larson, Mercy Sister, California, EE.UU.

98. Carolyn Jaramillo, Co-Member Loretto Community. EE.UU.

99. Stacy Lulu, Co-Member Loretto Community, EE.UU.

100. Keith Bierbaum, Maryknoll Affiliate, Albuquerque, New Mexico, EE.UU.

101. Annette O’Connor, Maryknoll Affiliate, Albuquerque, New Mexico, EE.UU.

102. Cynthia Ranke, Maryknoll Affiliate, Albuquerque, New Mexico, EE.UU.

103. Judy Bierbaum, Maryknoll Affiliate, Albuquerque, New Mexico, EE.UU.

104. Judith Bankert, OP, Adrian Dominican, EE.UU.

105. Kathrine Nolan, OP, Global Mission, Peace and Justice Office, EE.UU.

106. Barbara O’Connor, OFS, Santa Fe, New Mexico, EE.UU.

107. Sr. Kathleen Desautels, SP, Chicago, Illinois, EE.UU.

108. Sr. Lelia Mattingly, Maryknoll Sister, El Paso, Texas, EE.UU.

109. Beatrice Dommillan, SHSP., Volunteer Annunciation House, El Paso, Texas, EE.UU.

110. Brother David Huit, ofm, cap, Illinois, EE.UU.

111. Marianne Comfort, Sisters of Mercy, Silver Spring, Maryland, EE.UU.

112. Jeremy Dickey, Sisters of Mercy, Silver Spring, Maryland, EE.UU.

113. Kathleen Erickson, Sisters of Mercy, Omaha, Nebraska, EE.UU.

114. Betty Krogman, Mercy Sister Associate, Nashville, Tennessee, EE.UU.

115. Diane Clyne, Sisters of Mercy, San Francisco, California, EE.UU.

116. Patricia Schlosser, osf, Franciscan Sister of Rochester, Minnesota, Chicago, Illinois, EE.UU.

117. Mary Kay Flanigan, osf, Franciscan Sister of Rochester, Minnesota, Chicago, Illinois, EE.UU.

118. Fr. Louis Vitale, Ph.D, Franciscan Friars, Oakland, California, EE.UU.

119. William Vela, Cmf, Misionero Claretiano de Ecuador

120. César Augusto Livizaca, Cmf, Misionero Claretiano de Ecuador

121. Gustavo Rodríguez, Cmf, Misionero Claretiano de Ecuador

122. Liliana Lopez, Miembro de la Coordinación Nacional de Los Seminarios de Formación Teológica, Argentina

123. Osvaldo Acosta, Equipo de Comunicación Popular Presencia y Memoria, Argentina.

124. Gustavo Zarza- Cora Grevisse, Secretaria de Asuntos Religiosos Corriente Nacional Emancipación Sur, Argentina

125. Mareelen Diaz Tenorio. Vicedirectora Área De Equidad Social, Genero Y Desarrollo, Centro Oscar Arnulfo Romero-Cuba (Oar), Cuba

126. Irma Bernal Collazo. Vice Directora Económica, Área Económica, Centro Oscar Arnulfo Romero-Cuba (Oar), Cuba

127. Laritza Gonzalez Achon. Especialista Fortalecimiento Institucional Área De Coordinación General, Centro Oscar Arnulfo Romero-Cuba (Oar), Cuba

128. Zulema Hidalgo Gomez. Especialista Área De Equidad Social, Genero Y Desarrollo, Centro Oscar Arnulfo Romero-Cuba (Oar), Cuba

129. Maria Teresa Diaz Alvarez. Especialista Área De Equidad Social, Genero Y Desarrollo, Centro Oscar Arnulfo Romero-Cuba (Oar), Cuba

130. Ivon Ernand. Especialista, Centro Oscar Arnulfo Romero-Cuba (Oar), Cuba

131. Rafael Barrera Yanes. Especialista Área De Fe, Articulación Ecuménica Y Sociedad, Centro Oscar Arnulfo Romero-Cuba (Oar), Cuba

132. Yasmany Diaz Figueroa. Especialista Área De Equidad Social, Genero Y Desarrollo, Centro Oscar Arnulfo Romero-Cuba (Oar), Cuba

133. P. Rogelio Ponseele, Coordinador del trabajo de comunidades, al norte de Morazán, El Salvador

134. Maricarmen Montes, Servicio Internacional Cristiano de Solidaridad Oscar Romero de México.

135. Magdalena Castro Lewis, Volunteer Pax Christi International

136. Nona Lee Gregg, member of Veteran’s for Peace, Santa Fe, NM chapter, EE.UU.

137. Luis Ma. Alman Bornes – Iglesia Anabautista Menonita de Buenos Aires, Argentina

138. Natasha Tellería Mata, Miembro de la Iglesia Presbiteriana de Venezuela, Venezuela

139. Ana María Valera, Miembro de la Iglesia Presbiteriana de Venezuela, Venezuela

140. Loida Gáffaro de Valera, Miembro de la Iglesia Presbiteriana de Venezuela, Venezuela

141. Red Mundial Iglesias y Minería

142. Grupo Belga ‘Solidario con Guatemala’

143. Red Europea de Comités Oscar Romero

144. Missionários Combonianos no Brasil

145. Comisión Ética contra la Tortura CECT-Chile

146. Comunidades Cristianas Populares del Estado Español

147. Conferencia de Religiosos de Centroamérica y México, Jpic CONFERCAM

148. Pastoral Social diócesis del Alto Valle de Rio Negro, Argentina

149. Hermanas de la Misericordia de las Americas. Cómunidad de Argentina

150. Proyecto Crecer con esperanza. Río Negro, Argentina.

151. MISIONEROS CLARETIANOS DE AMÉRICA – (MICLA).

Colombian Signatories

152. Rev. Atahualpa Hernández, Pastor Iglesia Evangélica Luterana de Colombia, IELCO.

153. Yalile Caballero, Presidenta de la Iglesia Menonita de Colombia, IMCOL.

154.Rev. Jairo Barriga Jaraba, Secretario General Presbiterio de la Costa, Iglesia Presbiteriana de Colombia, IPC.

155. Pastor Pablo Moreno, Iglesia Bautista de Cali y Rector de la Fundación Universitaria Bautista de Cali

156. Padre Alberto Franco, Secretario Ejecutivo Comisión Justicia y Paz

157. Jenny Neme, Directora Asociación Cristiana Menonita para Justicia, Paz y Acción Noviolenta, Justapaz.

158. Ricardo Pinzón, Director Fundación Menonita Colombiana para el Desarrollo, MENCOLDES

159. Alba Luz Arrieta Cabrales, Coordinadora Regional Central Programa Alternativas a la Violencia. PAV Colombia –Bogotá

160. Pastor Leonel Rubiano Villa, Iglesia Bautista de Cali, Vicerrector de la Fundación Universitaria Bautista de Cali, Unibautista

161. Pedro Acosta Fernández, Director Corporación Para el desarrollo social comunitario, CORSOC

162. Rev. Adelaida Jiménez Cortes. Presidenta de la Comunidad de Educación Teológica, Ecuménica y Latinoamericana (CETELA)

163. Esteban Arias, Director Asociación Colectivo Ecuménico de Biblistas, CEDEBI, Bogotá, Colombia.

164. Isdalia Ortega, Pastora Iglesia Menonita de Colombia, Profesora Fundación Univeristaria Bautista y Miembro de la Junta Directiva del Consejo Latinoamericano de Iglesias, CLAI

165. Diana Cruz, Coordinadora Movimiento Estudiantil Cristiano de Bogotá, Colombia

166. Rev. Michael Joseph, Coordinador del Centro de Estudios para la Paz – Unibautista, Misionero de Ministerios Globales

167. Jhon Martínez, Colaborador del Centro Regional Ecuménico para Asesoría y Servicio, CREAS, Pastor de Asambleas de Dios, AD

168. Pastora Alix Lozano, Grupo Ecuménico de Mujeres Constructoras de Paz, GEMPAZ

169. Rev. Nelson Fernando Celis Ángel, Pastor Iglesia Evangélica Luterana de Colombia, IELCO.

170. Rev. John Hernández, Pastor Iglesia Evangélica Luterana de Colombia, IELCO.

171. Rev Jairo Suarez, Pastor Iglesia Evangélica Luterana de Colombia, IELCO.

172. Rev. Liria Consuelo Preciado, Iglesia Evangélica Luterana de Colombia, IELCO.

173. Carlos Guevara, Sacerdote Iglesia Episcopal Anglicana

174. Pastor Pedro Stuky, Iglesia Menonita de Colombia

175. Octavio Correal, Sacerdote Iglesia Ortodoxa

176. Nestor Torres, Sacerdote Iglesia Misionera de La Juventud

177. Pedro Torres, Sacerdote Iglesia San Pablo

178. Rene Luengas, Sacerdote Católico, Fundación EUDES

179. Miguel Angel Calderón, Sacerdote Corporación Claretiana

180. Rodrigo Castillo Rodallega, Representante Legal Comunidades Construyendo Paz en los Territorios, CONPAZ, Colombia

181. María Eugenia Mosquera Riascos, Secretaria Técnica Comunidades Construyendo Paz en los Territorios, CONPAZ, Colombia

182. Andrés Alba, Secretario Técnico Diálogo Intereclesial por la Paz, DiPaz

183. Angélica Rincón, Coordinadora Programa de Memoria Histórica e Incidencia Política, Justapaz.

184. Raimy Ramírez Jiménez, Equipo coordinador del Movimiento Estudiantil Cristiano de Colombia. MEC.

185. Lizeth Prieto García, Equipo coordinador del Movimiento Estudiantil Cristiano de Colombia, MEC

186. Edith Muñoz. Equipo coordinador del Movimiento Estudiantil Cristiano de Colombia, MEC

187. Johana Núñez . Equipo Coordinador del Movimiento Estudiantil Cristiano de Colombia, MEC

188. Laura Zárate. Coordinadora Movimiento Estudiantil Cristiano de Barranquilla, Colombia, MEC

189. Lácides Hernández, Director Confraternidad Carcelaria de Colombia.

190. Alveiro Valencia, Federación Colombiana de ACJ-YMCA.

191. Viviana Machuca, Compromisos Públicos – Relacionamiento con Iglesias y OBF´s, World Vision, Colombia.

192. Hna Cecilia Naranjo Botero, Rsj

193. Constanza Arroyo, Conferencia de Religiosos de Colombia, Bogotá, Colombia

194. Hna Valerie Usher, Hermanas Franciscanas de Nuestra Señora de Lourdes Colombia

195. Hna Carolina Pardo, Hermanas Franciscanas de Nuestra Señora de Lourdes Colombia

196. Nidia Victoria Zuluaga, Religiosa Hermanas Juanistas

197. Cristina De La Torre, Religiosa Hermanas de Nazaret

198. Carlos Rozo Rubiano, Cmf, Misionero Claretiano de Colombia

199. Alfonso Prieto Guzmán, Cmf, Misionero Claretiano de Colombia

200. Henry Ramírez Soler, Cmf, Misionero Claretiano de Colombia

201. Guillermo Salamanca, Cmf, Misionero Claretiano de Colombia

202. Abilio Peña, Teólogo, Comisión Justicia y Paz

203. Edgard Ramírez, Docente, Iglesia Anglicana de Las Américas

204. Andrés Acosta, Educador Centro de investigación y Educación Popular, CINEP

205. Fernando Quintero, Comunidades Eclesiales de Base, CEB`s

206. Leopoldina Mendoza, Comunidades Eclesiales de Base, CEB`s

207. Martin Nates, Asociación Cristiana Menonita para Justicia, Paz y Acción Noviolenta, Justapaz

208. Fernando Torres, Educador Kaired Educativo, Bogotá

209. Alfonso Franco Educador Kaired Educativo, Manizales

210. Ines Duque, Mesa Ecuménica por la Paz, MEP

211. Yolanda Reyes, Mesa Ecuménica por la Paz, MEP

212. Omar Fernández, Mesa Ecuménica por la Paz, MEP

213. Maritze Trigos, Mesa Ecuménica por la Paz, MEP

214. Teresa Cano, Grupo Ecuménico de Mujeres Constructoras de Paz, GEMPAZ, AFAVIT

215. Blanca Marina Rojas, Religiosa, Mesa Ecuménica por la Paz, MEP

216. Jaime León, Laico Corporación Claretiana

WSCF Message on the Colombian Peace Agreement

Message of Hope and Celebration on the historic Peace Agreement between Colombian Government and Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia—Ejército del Pueblo (FARC EP) 


“We are many, we are one…sent out to build God´s peace”.

(Para la versión española véase más adelante)

The Colombian government and the FARC guerrilla have announced the final peace agreement to end more than 50 years of war on Monday, August 29th 2016. Closing the negotiations that took place in the last 4 years in Habana, Cuba, giving way to a new historic chapter for all Colombians, a peaceful future.  

The World Student Christian Federation (WSCF) celebrates the historic Peace Deal reached and express its support to the Colombian Christian movement, churches and organizations that work on building peace with justice every day, especially in the steps that follow. 

We celebrate this historic Peace Agreement reached by the negotiating teams, as well as all the processes aiming to restore human dignity and promote inclusion and equity.

As a Federation, we recognize and congratulate the committed work of the Interchurch Dialog for Peace-DIPAZ, a platform that gathers together churches and faith organizations in Colombia, through processes that offered guarantees, observation, monitoring and advocacy.

We reaffirm our commitment of providing a space to promote solidarity with Colombian people through our global Student Christian Movements and to work together with building peace organizations and churches in Colombia.

We encourage education, reflection and actions of young people and students to promote and build peace according to their contexts. Seeking also the construction of memory and identity to ensure a more just and peaceful future. 


We believe in the responsibility of the different sectors of society to give viability and implementation to the reached Peace Agreements. Additionally, we hope that the talks between the National Liberation Army (ELN) and Colombian Government can begin soon, looking for new deals to cease hostility and violence. 

We offer our prayers for all Colombians, the peacemakers, Colombian students and youth in facing the challenges that lie ahead in the post-agreement. For God´s presence in the constructing process of a complete, comprehensive, just and lasting peace. 
 
WSCF remain in solidarity with the churches and people in Colombia. Let us give Peace a chance!


Necta Montes
Secretaria General FUMEC

Marcelo Leites 
Ejecutivo Regional FUMEC América Latina y el Caribe.

31 August 2016

 

Download in English (docx)

* * *

Mensaje de acompañamiento y celebración sobre el  histórico Acuerdo de Paz entre el Gobierno de Colombia y las Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia—Ejército del Pueblo (FARC EP)

“Somos Muchos, Somos Uno” Enviados a construir la Paz de Dios”

El pasado 29 de agosto el Gobierno colombiano y las FARC-EP anunciaron el acuerdo definitivo que pone final a una guerra de más de 50 años. Cerrando las negociaciones que se sucedieron en los últimos 4 años, en la Habana, Cuba, y dando luz a un nuevo escenario histórico para todos los y las colombianas.

La Federación Universal de Movimientos Estudiantiles Cristianos celebra el histórico Acuerdo de Paz alcanzado y desea expresar su acompañamiento para con el Movimiento Estudiantil Cristiano de Colombia, las Iglesias y las organizaciones que trabajan día a día por una paz con justicia en las etapas que continúan.

Celebramos el acuerdo histórico alcanzado por las partes. Así como todos los procesos que apunten a restaurar la dignidad humana promoviendo la inclusión y la equidad.

Reconocemos y saludamos el trabajo comprometido del Dialogo Inter-Eclesial de Paz – DIPAZ, espacio que nuclea a Iglesias y Organizaciones Basadas en la Fe en Colombia, a través de los procesos que ofrecieron garantías, observación, acompañamiento e incidencia.

Reafirmamos nuestro compromiso de ser un espacio que promueva la solidaridad internacional con Colombia a través de nuestros Movimientos Estudiantiles Cristianos a nivel Global y a entera disposición de las organizaciones e iglesias que trabajan por la Paz en Colombia.

Animamos a que más jóvenes y estudiantes puedan formarse, reflexionar y actuar sobre lo que sucede en su contexto. Procurando además a la construcción de memoria e identidad para garantizar un futuro más justo y pacífico.

Creemos en la responsabilidad de las partes en dar viabilidad e implementación a los acuerdos alcanzados. Asimismo, la necesidad de que los diálogos entre el Ejercito de Liberación Nacional y el Gobierno puedan comenzar pronto; apuntando a nuevos acuerdos que pongan fin a  cualquier hostilidad y violencia.

Oramos por todos los y las colombianas. Por los y las hacedores de Paz. Por los y las jóvenes y estudiantes colombianos. Por los desafíos que tienen por delante en los procesos post-acuerdo, para que Dios esté presente en su trabajo y obre en medio de ustedes para un proceso de construcción de una paz integral, justa y duradera.

Seguimos en solidaridad!

Necta Montes
Secretaria General FUMEC

Marcelo Leites 
Ejecutivo Regional FUMEC América Latina y el Caribe.

31 August 2016

 

Descargar en español (docx)

 

WSCF Statement on Orlando incident

wscf logo

 

World Student Christian Federation (WSCF)

Mourning the Loss & Decrying the Massacre

Praying for Healing & Seeking Justice

 

14 June 2016

 

The World Student Christian Federation mourns the massive loss of life and the wounding and traumatizing of so many people due to the atrocious mass shooting in a gay club in Orlando, Florida in the United States in the early hours of Sunday morning, June 12, 2016.

We collectively express our solidarity with families and friends who have lost their beloved ones in what is described as the biggest mass shooting in the recent history of the United States of America. As a student movement and federation, we grieve the death of so many young men and women, and the loss of so much youthful energy and future potential.

In this tragic time, the WSCF extends deep solidarity with LGBTQ communities around the world who are often victims of bigotry, harassment, discrimination, violence and murder for their sexual orientation and gender diversity. We take note that the majority of the victims are Latinos and Latinas, a group that has often come under attack in a vile electoral rhetoric by a political class that often manipulates issues for political gains. The rampage that occurred in Orlando is another example of how many people are imbibed with a culture of violence that reigns undisturbed in the world, often motivated by hatred towards minority communities.

We acknowledge that we are part of a global ecumenical community that is still divided on the issues of human sexuality and therefore lament the complicity of the global church in contributing to the suffering of sexual and gender minorities across the globe. This complicity does not help in eliminating the use of religion and religious rhetoric in justifying acts of terror and violence. 

We pray today for God’s consolation of the bereaved families and of traumatized communities in Orlando and across the world. We urge our student movements, communities and churches to stand in solidarity with LGBTQ people across the globe who today feel confused, terrorized and enraged by another act of hatred toward people who want to be who they are and love who they do in the open and without fear.

The WSCF is a Federation of Student Movements whose members’ age is in the same bracket as those who were murdered in the attack. Many of our students, staff and Senior Friends across the regions identify as LGBTQ and we accompany them as they feel the grief they feel today.  This violent act, as all the conflicts being waged in the world, reminds us that the production, sale and ease in purchasing small but deadly arms and assault-style weapons   point to the root causes of this heinous attack together with the perceived reasons that motivated the person who committed this mass homicide.

Although we do not shy away from naming the personal responsibility of those who carry out these despicable acts, we charge a societal system that condones violence against peoples who are made vulnerable by their marginalization and minoritization. We must thereby dismantle the veil of discrimination and fear that still envelops LGBTQ people in our societies and encourage our communities and governments to act today to protect those who are targeted by ignorance, violence and hatred.

As Christians, we must appeal to the Gospel of love and justice to resist the deadly onslaught on LGBQT people, often done in the name of God.  As a community of students and young people committed to interfaith engagement and justice, we stand in solidarity with our Muslim brothers and sisters who will likely be attacked and deviled because of the religious background of the perpetrator. For the massacre in Orlando, we must make sure that the bigotry of the perpetrator is equally emphasized as the terrorism ascribed to his act.

We affirm the sanctity of safe spaces for LGBTQ people for whom often dancing, as is the case of WSCF events, is a liberating act from hurt and injustice. We call on the God of love to bring healing to those who cry today and to make us agents of transformation for a world in need of justice and peace.

 

On behalf of the WSCF Advocacy and Solidarity Committee (ASC) members

 

 

Necta Montes                                                                                                            Luciano Kovacs

General Secretary                                                                                                     Executive Secretary for North America

                                                and Program Director for Advocacy  

                                                and Solidarity

Sunita Suna                                                                                                              

Executive for Asia Pacific                                                                                       

and Program Director for Identity,                                                    

Diversity and Dialogue                                                                      

 

Download this statement in PDF.

 

WCC: Israeli treatment of representatives at airport unacceptable

WCC: Israeli treatment of representatives at airport unacceptable

After traveling to Ben Gurion airport in Tel Aviv in the last week for a climate justice meeting, World Council of Churches (WCC) staff and partners were detained or deported in a manner that WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit terms both unprecedented and intolerable.

World Council of Churches Working Group on Climate Change meeting in Jerusalem, May 2016. Credit: Albin Hillert/WCC

Visit to the Holy Land, May 2016. Credit: Albin Hillert/WCC

“The WCC protests the excessive, unreasonable and wholly unwarranted treatment by the Israeli authorities of these representatives of WCC member churches and staff traveling to engage in discussions on climate change and environmental stewardship, at the invitation of and hosted by WCC’s member churches in the region,” he said.

Members of the WCC’s Working Group on Climate Change from as many as 13 countries reported they were held for hours of interrogation, including tough intimidation and detention in prison-like conditions for up to three days — a very difficult experience, Tveit said. “We react in different ways emotionally to experiences like this. For all of them, I think it was totally unexpected and very disturbing, for most of them shocking, as they have never experienced anything like this before.”

Although there have been small incidents in the past, there has been nothing approaching this level of intimidation, Tveit added.

The members of the Working Group on Climate Change had traveled to Israel in a spirit of ecumenical solidarity to address shared global challenges in environmental protection and climate change mitigation and adaptation. 

Travelers were detained, interrogated and intimidated. Expressing his concern about the effect of such treatment on people, Tveit said he had no reason to believe there would be any problem for people traveling to this meeting, particularly since there have been other such meetings over many years, not only related to climate change but also to ecumenical relations, peacemaking and theological reflection. For many years, the WCC has drawn on resources and counterparts from both Palestine and Israel to promote peaceful relations and coexistence.

All traveling WCC participants from the WCC working group are safely out of Israel. The WCC called on the government of Israel for an apology as well as to desist its aggressive behaviour toward WCC member churches and staff in the future. “We believe that it is also in the interest of the government of Israel to address these very unpleasant incidents for future visitors to this country, and to prevent their recurrence,” said Tveit and added “We are ready to meet and discuss these issues.”

 

Media contact WCC: Marianne Ejdersten, director of communication at the World Council of Churches: mej[at]wcc-coe.org, +41.79.507.6363

 

Read the WCC statement on the events

Read a copy of letter from WCC GS to the Israeli Mission

Member churches in Israel and Palestine 

Dummy article 9

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, quando pericula contentiones nam cu, enim mediocrem eam ne. Pro eius autem sensibus cu. Eum te consequat sadipscing, ut eam laudem evertitur efficiendi. Ad quod discere vocibus sed, pri falli populo mandamus cu. Usu sale animal viderer ne, mei et erat veritus salutatus.

Vix ea animal alienum consulatu, at eros essent vis. Te has tacimates suscipiantur. Eu inani cetero pertinacia mea. Eu usu fastidii mediocritatem, te tota iracundia vim, mentitum repudiare has id. No sale cotidieque nam, tempor oblique expetenda mel eu.

Dummy article 8

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, quando pericula contentiones nam cu, enim mediocrem eam ne. Pro eius autem sensibus cu. Eum te consequat sadipscing, ut eam laudem evertitur efficiendi. Ad quod discere vocibus sed, pri falli populo mandamus cu. Usu sale animal viderer ne, mei et erat veritus salutatus.

Vix ea animal alienum consulatu, at eros essent vis. Te has tacimates suscipiantur. Eu inani cetero pertinacia mea. Eu usu fastidii mediocritatem, te tota iracundia vim, mentitum repudiare has id. No sale cotidieque nam, tempor oblique expetenda mel eu.

Dummy article 7

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, quando pericula contentiones nam cu, enim mediocrem eam ne. Pro eius autem sensibus cu. Eum te consequat sadipscing, ut eam laudem evertitur efficiendi. Ad quod discere vocibus sed, pri falli populo mandamus cu. Usu sale animal viderer ne, mei et erat veritus salutatus.

Vix ea animal alienum consulatu, at eros essent vis. Te has tacimates suscipiantur. Eu inani cetero pertinacia mea. Eu usu fastidii mediocritatem, te tota iracundia vim, mentitum repudiare has id. No sale cotidieque nam, tempor oblique expetenda mel eu.

Dummy article 6

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, quando pericula contentiones nam cu, enim mediocrem eam ne. Pro eius autem sensibus cu. Eum te consequat sadipscing, ut eam laudem evertitur efficiendi. Ad quod discere vocibus sed, pri falli populo mandamus cu. Usu sale animal viderer ne, mei et erat veritus salutatus.

Vix ea animal alienum consulatu, at eros essent vis. Te has tacimates suscipiantur. Eu inani cetero pertinacia mea. Eu usu fastidii mediocritatem, te tota iracundia vim, mentitum repudiare has id. No sale cotidieque nam, tempor oblique expetenda mel eu.

Dummy article 5

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, quando pericula contentiones nam cu, enim mediocrem eam ne. Pro eius autem sensibus cu. Eum te consequat sadipscing, ut eam laudem evertitur efficiendi. Ad quod discere vocibus sed, pri falli populo mandamus cu. Usu sale animal viderer ne, mei et erat veritus salutatus.

Vix ea animal alienum consulatu, at eros essent vis. Te has tacimates suscipiantur. Eu inani cetero pertinacia mea. Eu usu fastidii mediocritatem, te tota iracundia vim, mentitum repudiare has id. No sale cotidieque nam, tempor oblique expetenda mel eu.

Dummy article 4

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, quando pericula contentiones nam cu, enim mediocrem eam ne. Pro eius autem sensibus cu. Eum te consequat sadipscing, ut eam laudem evertitur efficiendi. Ad quod discere vocibus sed, pri falli populo mandamus cu. Usu sale animal viderer ne, mei et erat veritus salutatus.

Vix ea animal alienum consulatu, at eros essent vis. Te has tacimates suscipiantur. Eu inani cetero pertinacia mea. Eu usu fastidii mediocritatem, te tota iracundia vim, mentitum repudiare has id. No sale cotidieque nam, tempor oblique expetenda mel eu.

Dummy article 3

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, quando pericula contentiones nam cu, enim mediocrem eam ne. Pro eius autem sensibus cu. Eum te consequat sadipscing, ut eam laudem evertitur efficiendi. Ad quod discere vocibus sed, pri falli populo mandamus cu. Usu sale animal viderer ne, mei et erat veritus salutatus.

Vix ea animal alienum consulatu, at eros essent vis. Te has tacimates suscipiantur. Eu inani cetero pertinacia mea. Eu usu fastidii mediocritatem, te tota iracundia vim, mentitum repudiare has id. No sale cotidieque nam, tempor oblique expetenda mel eu.

Dummy article 2

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, quando pericula contentiones nam cu, enim mediocrem eam ne. Pro eius autem sensibus cu. Eum te consequat sadipscing, ut eam laudem evertitur efficiendi. Ad quod discere vocibus sed, pri falli populo mandamus cu. Usu sale animal viderer ne, mei et erat veritus salutatus.

Vix ea animal alienum consulatu, at eros essent vis. Te has tacimates suscipiantur. Eu inani cetero pertinacia mea. Eu usu fastidii mediocritatem, te tota iracundia vim, mentitum repudiare has id. No sale cotidieque nam, tempor oblique expetenda mel eu.

Dummy article 1

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, quando pericula contentiones nam cu, enim mediocrem eam ne. Pro eius autem sensibus cu. Eum te consequat sadipscing, ut eam laudem evertitur efficiendi. Ad quod discere vocibus sed, pri falli populo mandamus cu. Usu sale animal viderer ne, mei et erat veritus salutatus.

Vix ea animal alienum consulatu, at eros essent vis. Te has tacimates suscipiantur. Eu inani cetero pertinacia mea. Eu usu fastidii mediocritatem, te tota iracundia vim, mentitum repudiare has id. No sale cotidieque nam, tempor oblique expetenda mel eu.

Apply for 2016 Agape summer camp!

agape

Apply now for three interesting international summer camps in Italy’s Waldensian Valley.

  • International Theological Camp ( 30 July – 6 August 2016) Childhood in the Bible: a path between Ancient and New Testament
  • International Workcamp Camp (6 – 13 August 2016) Felicità, felicidad, happiness, bonheur, Fröehlichkeit, шчасце, 幸せ, ευτυχία, счастье, mutluluk, kabungahan.
    We seek it and we know what we want to find…
  • International Political Camp (13 – 20 August 2016) Migration: Breaking down boundaries on a journey towards a common home

International Theological Camp ( 30 July – 6 August 2016)

Childhood in the Bible: a path between Ancient and New Testament

This year’s camp will lead us in a reflective journey about a not very well known but very important Biblical reality: childhood. Through a reflection on the nature of childhood in the Bible, we will examine its understanding in our societies and how such an understanding characterizes our reading of the Bible today. What does being known as a “son/daughter of” imply as opposed to being recognized by one’s own name? What does it mean to be a child? Is childhood an important phase or is it just an anticipatory phase? If there were no childhood and we entered directly into adulthood, would there be any differences in our being humans.

We will have a week of discussions, speeches, games, artistic activities, and reflections where we will get to know each other and our cultures to challenge and support each other with this particular reading perspective. Jesus said that we should be like children. Come and join us so we can discover together what that could mean! Read more.

International Workcamp Camp (6 – 13 August 2016)

Felicità, felicidad, happiness, bonheur, Fröehlichkeit, шчасце, 幸せ, ευτυχία, счастье, mutluluk, kabungahan.
We seek it and we know what we want to find…

We are more and more influenced by economy-related issues where happiness is measured in terms of financial wealth or portrayed as a product to buy. Our long working hours are pawned for ​food​ and ​we ​gnaw on a piece of zircon think​ing it’s really a diamond. I​t seems to us that the more we try to achieve ​the ​happiness packaged by advertising and by some media, the more ​enslaved ​we become.​ Almost as it is only given to approach it but not to reach it. Is there a “more real” happiness than others? Happiness is measurable in brain activity in a given state of rest? What is our idea of ​​happiness? Are we able to look for “our” happiness without completely ​giving ​in to the influence of external forces​, without undermining our desire to live, without becoming compulsive consumers.
​H​ow many languages ​will ​​​we ​​write our​ ​manifesto for happiness​ in​? Read more.

International Political Camp (13 – 20 August 2016)

Migration: Breaking down boundaries on a journey towards a common home

From the very beginning, humans have always been on the move, seeking safe refuge and livelihoods. However, in today’s ‘globalized’ world – where goods and capital can cross borders – people fleeing from wars, repressive regimes, poverty and climate-induced crises encounter myriad physical, legal and socio-cultural barriers. Migrants are often seen as threats to identity and security as well as competitors for scarceresources. Their desperation not only makes them vulnerable to traffickers, but also to exploitation by a global economic system founded on cheap labour.

Against this backdrop, the 2016 Agape International Political Camp aims to provide a platform for discussing the following questions:

  • How are current migrations rooted in historic, economic and ecological processes?
  • What political structures and cultural transformations are necessary to protect and respect the dignity and rights of migrants and refugees?
  • How do we develop a collective understanding of the world as our common home where all people, regardless of ethnicity/race, religion, gender and class, have the right to move freely, to live in peace and to access an equitable share of resources?
  • Finally, what practical actions can we take together?

Read more.

What are Agape camps

The WSCF has had a historical relationship with the international ecumenical center of Agape in Northern Italy, which helped build right after World War II as a symbol of reconciliation among the nations that had been at war in the conflict. Youth and students from different parts of the worlds, many of whom are members of national SCMs across the world – were convened by visionary Waldensian Pastor Tullio Vinay to contribute their energy and vision to build the Agape center, which has been ever since at the forefront of cutting edge theological, social, political and gender reflections. Every year in August three international conferences, one on theology, one on political issues, and one on voluntary work are held at the Center. Scholarships from the Agape Center enable young adult and student participation. Are Kaspersen (SCM Sweden) has attended Agape camp last year – read his reflection here.

Scholarships are available:

Agape provides scholarships for people over eighteen who want to take part in the international camps at Agape. In particular they would like to offer scholarships to people from the Southern Hemisphere and Eastern Europe to further their participation in their international camps. They can reimburse some travel expenses and fund the cost of staying at Agape. Regretfully, they are not able to meet every request for financial aid since the demand is greater than the funds that they have available. All applications will be considered carefully.

In particular, Agape appreciates applications from people who would like to take part in all our three international camps and stay longer as a workcamp volunteer.

Deadline for applications: 1 March 2016

For all the information about applying to any of the International Work Camps please visit the Agape website. Please note that prior to applying, you need to consult your Regional Office for approval.

WSCF Executive Committee appoints Global Staff Team

“My mind was at peace as I felt that the Holy Spirit in the way we can not predict is taking WSCF in another level. WSCF future is bright and those called to minister at this time should be more careful and work with their full mind and heart to be in God's plans,” said Georgine Kengne Djeutane, WSCF Interim Chairperson expressing her thoughts one month after leading the successful WSCF Executive Committee and Transition Team extra-ordinary meeting on December 15 to 16, in Palermo Sicily.

The WSCF Executive Committee (Exco) approved the proposals of the WSCF Transition Team summarized in the Palermo Communique released on December 23, 2014.  The Communique outlined the significant decisions, among which was appointing one, instead of two General Secretaries and the subsequent plan to amend its constitutional provisions.  The Exco appointed out-going Transition Team Interim Staff Coordinator, Necta Montes, former Asia Pacific Secretary and senior friend from the Philippines as Secretary General to lead the next process.  Necta begins her new role this January 2016 and will hold a temporary office at the United Church of Christ in the Philippines (UCCP) national office in Quezon City Philippines during the transition period.

“The task ahead continues to be daunting, systemic and structural changes in a context of a historic institution like the Federation will take time, but I have no doubt that as generation of young and committed SCMs take part in God’s work for justice and peace in different parts and context of the world, WSCF’s legacy of building ecumenical leaders will continue” said Necta Montes. She pointed out the importance of the new Strategic Plan in concretizing WSCF’s commitment to work for Ecological Justice, Identity, Diversity and Dialogue (IDD), Peace Building and Dialogue and Higher Education.  She believes that the implementation of this Plan is key to the organization’s transition from an “organization that was heavily focused towards itself, its own survival to an organization that is oriented towards its mission to the world,” said Montes.  These thematic focus cut-across five of WSCF’s Programmatic Strategies on Biblical and Theological Analysis, Advocacy and Solidarity, Ecumenical Transformative Diakonia, Capacity Building and Movement Building.

This mission orientation is also reflected in the Executive Committee’s decision to appoint former Regional Secretaries as Regional Executives and Global Program Directors, “reflecting the changing nature of their work and priorities…(and) plan for global coordination and the integration of strategic programming will be the main feature of work in the next four years,” according to the Palermo Communique.

Following this decision, Luciano Kovacs from Italy was appointed Regional Executive for North America and Global Program Director for Advocacy and Solidarity, Sunita Suna from India as Regional Executive for Asia Pacific and Global Program Director for Identity, Diversity and Dialogue, Amos Mushwendwa from Tanzania as Regional Executive for Africa and Global Program Director for Bible and Theology, Elsy Wakil from Lebanon as Regional Executive for Middle East and Global Program Director for Peace Building and Overcoming Violence, Marcelo Leites from Uruguay as Regional Executive for Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) and Global Program Director for Eco Justice, and Natia Tsintsadze from Italy as Regional Executive for Europe and Global Program Executive for Interfaith.

Reminding the newly appointed WSCF Global Staff Team of their priorities ahead, Kengne Djeutane exclaimed, “we should continue to seek the unity and the renewal of the church in a context where Christian faith is challenged and the growing of religious persecution, terrorism and destructive sects etc. WSCF should continue to nurture and develop prophetic leaders in their program addressing transformative Diakonia and other social, economic and cultural issues. Most importantly should address the growing issue of migration with all its ramification.”  

Palermo 7

The Executive Committee thanked the members of the WSCF Transition Team composed of Georgine Kengne Djeutane, Necta Montes, Salters Sterling, Marco Fornerone, Chris Ferguzon, Pretty Mubaiwa and Bronwyn Claire for their invaluable work and contribution in the transition work.

WSCF calls for greater compassion, openness and justice for forced migrants, refugees and asylum seekers in Europe

WSCF calls for greater compassion, openness and justice for forced migrants, refugees and asylum seekers in Europe

“We should stop referring to migration in Europe as emergency, it is not, it is a consequence of the historical injustice of colonialism and global economic structure that forced people to migrate”, said Silvia Rapisarda, Waldensian pastor and SCM Italy senior friend, leading the theological reflection during the WSCF Inter-regional Leadership Development Training Program (IRLTP) on Transformative Diakonia on December 9 to 15, 2015.
Focusing on the theme Migration and Refugees, the training program attended by 25 participants from the Student Christian Movements (SCMs) was organized in Palermo Sicily, an island hosting an increasing number of migrants from Africa, Middle East and South Asia. According to the Palermo Social Service office, 345 minor migrants arrived via boat a few days before the training participants visited the office. “Because government center cannot cope with the influx, the migrant minors are sent to 38 Communities all-over Palermo where they are provided shelter, clothing, food and counseling by a group of volunteers,” explained the staff.
Palermo1
One such Community is the La Noce Centro Diaconale Instituto Valdese in Palermo, where the WSCF training program was also being held. La Noce hosts 9 young male migrants from Africa aged from 14 to 18, most of whom travelled months before arriving Sicily. Anna Ponente, director of the La Noce Centro explained that the “Community provides education that would allow the migrants to communicate, develop their skills for personal development to fulfill long-term plans. ” A number of migrants coming to Palermo move on to other European countries to join families after completing the mandatory 7 years domicile in Italy.
Torzten Moritz, Coordinator of the Churches Witnessing with Migrants (CWWM) and SCM Germany senior friend lamented the lack of cooperation and coordinated response of the 28 member European states on the recent wave of migrants coming to Europe, “the EU member states needs to update its migration policy and laws to adapt to the changing time” he added. He urged governments to adopt the “Legal Protection Perspective” arguing that migrants and refugees rights are human rights. Asked about the response of churches in Europe, Moritz shared varied ways churches opened their doors to migrants and highlighted the work of churches in Italy and Greece in providing safe passage called “Humanitarian Corridors” and “Humanitarian Visas” for migrants needing immediate humanitarian protection. As of recent, 1,000 visas have been approved by the EU processed through the Humanitarian Corridors.
DSC_0238
Mediterranean Hope, a program of the Federation of the Evangelical Churches in Italy is one such response. Alberto Mallardo staff of Mediterranean Hope working in the frontline in Lampadusa island shared, “migrants reception is institutionalized and militarized…once they arrive on the Lampedusa coast, they are whisked away to secured camps where there is no possibility for local people to interact.” Lampedusa, a tiny island south of Sicily with a population of 6,000 received 20,000 migrants, sparking speculation of the growing tension between the locals and migrants. “To combat this negative image we organize reception with local people bringing food, blankets, clothes the moment migrants arrive, established a Cultural Center to break marginalization and stigma” Alberto added during the panel presentation.
Palermo 4
Sharing his experience, Massino Gnone, Coordinator of Commission Social Development (CSD) of the Waldensian Church in Prali was critical of government’s approach of repeating the “cycle of dispossession and the identity theft that migrants experience in the course of migrating,” he explained the concept of an Integrated Reception “a shift from sphere of assistance to recognition of (migrants) fundamental rights.” Agreeing with this new approach, Immanuel Simon an International Volunteer at CSD from SCM India works on interfaith and ecumenical approach with migrants to break isolation and establish fellowship with the local residence.
“How do we want the WSCF brand known for its advocacy and action on the issue of migration?” asked Rev. Levi Baustista, assistant general secretary of the GBCS and WSCF Advocacy Solidarity Committee (ASC) senior friend adviser during the skills training. He further urged WSCF to use “forced migration” as most appropriate to differentiate it from voluntary and documented migrants. He also challenged WSCF “advocacy and solidarity with migrants should include accompaniment by creating platform for the voice holders to be present.”
 
DSC_0117
The training program concluded with the adoption of the WSCF Advocacy and Solidarity Plan on migrants, refugees and asylum seekers that will be implemented in the next four years. The Plan calls for consciousness raising and education at the national level, coordination of efforts, participation and advocating for migrants rights in national, regional and global platforms with churches and ecumenical organizations. WSCF will join with CWWM in next Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD) schedule in Bangladesh in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
Palermo 2
The training program was supported by the Otto Per Mille of the Waldesian Church in Italy, Karibu Foundation, Bread for the World, United Church of Canada, United Church of Christ in the USA, Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland and individual donors.

And it all begins….

 

Christine Housel the General Secretary of the Global Office is on her way to Bogota, Colombia wishing all our delegates, senior friends and partners best wishes for the 35th General Assembly in Bogota, Colombia.