Skip to main content

Getting My Visa Renewed


Dear friends,

I arrived at the border with Venezuela after a long six hour journey of climbing and crossing the magnificent Andes mountains, including being above the tree line and in the clouds at times.


I went to the Colombian Consulate and found it full of people waiting. I went to the desk and, without even allowing me to say my name or why I was there, the secretary said, "Just have a seat. She will call you". I waited for an hour and half while some 40 people came and went, and I wondered if I had been forgotten. Finally the secretary saw me and said for me to go into a side room.

By this time I was rather anxious. I hoped that all 25 pages or so of papers that I had brought for my visa would be OK. The Consulate, Ziada, said, "Didn't you hear me call for those who needed visas?" I hadn't heard her.

I nervously gave her the stack of papers. As she began to go through them, she read about the beginnings of CPT, and she asked, "Who are the Mennonites and Quakers? Are they Christians?"

I answered, "We, the Mennonites, Quakers, and Brethren, are Christians who believe that peace, justice and helping the poor are a central part of the teaching of Jesus. If you read the New Testament, you will learn that Jesus taught a lot about these things."

"It talks here about loving your enemies. Do you really think that is possible?" Ziada asked. " I know it seems impossible," I replied, but my experience has been that if we will ask God to help us do that, we will be surprised as to what will happen. He can do a miracle even with us."

I then gave her a brochure, "Who are the Mennonites?" She read over half of it on the spot. Then I gave her the CPT Colombia Brochure; after reading a bit she remarked, "You guys really believe in this stuff about about loving your enemies, huh?" I then ended by giving her Peace Pilgrim's pamphlet on "The Way of Peace," showing her Peace Pilgrim's photo on the inside cover and saying, "For 28 years she walked across United States talking about the way of peace to whomever would listen. If people gave her food she ate, and if not, she fasted. If someone gave her a bed she would sleep in it, and if not she would sleep along the road. This is something I give to people as a way of promoting the way of peace, and it has been a help for me to understand the way of peace. Perhaps it might be a help to you."

A couple of days later I called to see if my visa had come through and the first thing Ziada said was, " That Way of Peace pamphlet is really good." A few days later my visa came through so I can stay in Colombia until the 21st of November.

Peace,

Jim

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

A Temper Tantrum

Dear friends: A Temper Tantrum On a shopping trip to Aldi’s I noticed a mother with a girl who was two and a boy who was one sitting together in her cart.. The boy was having a temper tantrum. I know how embarrassing that can be. Besides she was just beginning to shop. So I thought maybe I could help settle him down. So I went over and tried to talk to him. But he would have nothing to do with me. So I just started talking to his sister. “How old are you? What’s your name? How old is your brother? . “What is his name? She replied “Noah.” Hearing his name the boy started to quiet down and pay attention. After some more question and answers the kids and I shook hands and said goodbye. Then we both did our shopping. We passed each other several times. The kids would say “Hi” and wave each time we saw each other. Then as we went through the checkout the mother remarked, “Thank you so much, what is your name?” the kids waved saying “Goodby…

Outside the Box

Dear Friends,       Outside the Box I am here to share about making peace with Isis nonviolently. I came to this in my quiet time when I first heard of Isis. My response was, “I’m a pacifist so I prayed, “Lord, they are such bad people the only thing I know to do is get rid of them. Bomb them.” I suppose Jesus’ disciples, and many people today like me, might have had a similar response.
So I prayed, “Lord, I’m a pacifist. Show me Jesus’ way, there must be a better way.”Lo and behold I just happened to be reading pages in the book The Powers that Be where Walter Wink says “for every conflict there is a nonviolent answer” I prayed, “Lord, I don’t believe it, show me.” Then what came to me was we need first to understand what creates Isis support, why they hate us, what makes people join these terrorists, and to find a good solution. What if you went home tonight and your house looked like this?

(I pass out this picture of homes bombed by drones) And your family was killed by a US drone? Wo…

Separaciones

Queridos amigos,                                             Separaciones
Asistí a un mitin en Chicago donde 6,000 se reunieron para mantener a las familias unidas.
Pienso qué pasaría si mi Andy y Emily se vieran obligados a separarse de sus hijos 3 años, 1 año y 11 meses. ¿Hay alguna ley que sea adecuada para que eso suceda?



¿Puede un creyente justificar la separación familiar a la luz de la Biblia?
 Levítico 19: 33-34 y 24:22 - Cuando el extranjero reside contigo en tu tierra, no debes oprimir al extranjero. El extranjero que reside con usted será para usted como ciudadano entre usted; Amarás al extranjero como a ti mismo, porque extranjeros fuiste en la tierra de Egipto. Yo soy el Señor tu Dios ".
Deuteronomio 24: 17-18 - "No debes privar a un extranjero residente ... de justicia".
O el llamado de Jesús a "amar a todos"

En el mitin tuve una conversación de 20 minutos en español con una familia donde los padres eran indocumentados y sus hijos 1 y 14 fueron d…