Skip to main content

An Army Visit

Dear Friend,

“There must have been 40 or 50 soldiers from the Colombian Army who came through here. They accused Jorge, my son, of being an informer for the guerrillas. I was so scared. They took his picture and asked him a lot of accusing questions. I was afraid to let him go fishing like he often does. They were all around the house. I was afraid that if there was a confrontation with the guerrillas, bullets might hit any one of my children.”

“They asked our first and last names and checked them, with lots of others from the community, against their list of supposed guerrilla sympathizers. We are not guerrilla sympathizers, but there is nothing we can do to convince them otherwise. They have guns, so I don’t argue with them. Someone must be singling us out. I was so scared that I called Pierre of CPT to let you all know about it. Then I was scared that they might be listening in on the call. Pierre said it is was ok and wondered why the army keeps using these fear and intimidation tactics that make the people more afraid and less supportive of the Army.” (This was a good thing for Pierre to say, as way of getting this advice to the government, as we actually do have pretty clear evidence that the Colombian government does listen to our calls.) We were thankful to be able to listen for about an hour to this discourse as Rosa shared her many fears.

Stu, the other CPTer with me, then gave Rosa one of our pamphlets with our phone numbers on it. And I gave them a pamphlet from the Red Cross that explained their rights and the fact that it was against international law for armed groups to be near people’s homes because it endangered the residents. Stu and I then told Rosa, “Show these to any of the armed groups that might come by and tell them to give us a call if they want to know who we are. If they know an international organization is paying attention to you, they might think twice before acting.” This could be a help for them, if it happens again. We hope it will help them feel a bit safer.

This is Rosa’s second marriage, as her first husband was killed by one of the armed groups a few years ago as he was riding his horse on their farm. This explains some of her fears. The family seems to have adjusted well in spite of this drama in their life. They milk 14 Brahma cows and make cheese to sell. Everyone in the family is very friendly, and I always enjoy visiting with them. For security reasons the names have been changed and I was unable to include a photo of the family.

Pray for Rosa and the other families for their safety and peace of mind.

On April 1, I fly to Chicago. The adjustment period usually is hard and it's easy to get depressed, so your prayers for me would be appreciated. Thanks much.

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…

Korea Peace Healing our Divided couhtry

Dear friends “Healing Our Divided Country” First I rejoice at the North and South Korea peace agreement. I suggest you go to the link democracy now.org for a very good interview of an American coronel who resigned in protest against the afghan war, and even though she opposes most of trumps doings she gives surprising hopeful insights about the accords. “I have a friend who recently told me he thinks we should deport all undocumented persons. And we should just do away with those who disagree. We are quite good friends we play soft ball together. How do I begin to talk to him?” shared a student at George Fox University in Oregon. The professor suggested, “Well you have some common ground in softball. Maybe that would be a good place to start.” The prof added, “Just about every student enter the conversations that was great.” This was from one of the 10 times I shared in Oregon. Here is our Emily with her family that I shared about in the last letter. I am glad to report that donation for …