Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from 2011

Reading the Bible & Peace Advisory Board

Hello friends: Reading the Bible & Peace Advisory Board An Interesting survey how reading the Bible shape our opinions from"Christianity Today", This is a magazine that has been one of the main voices for Evangelical Christians in the USA.
Survey: Frequent Bible Reading Can Turn You Liberal What a surprising survey says about how reading the Bible frequently can turn you liberal (in some ways). Aaron B. Franzen | posted 10/12/2011 10:20AM
Related articles and links | 1 of 2


ADVERTISEMENT A recent poll from LifeWay Research found that 89 percent of American households still own a Bible, with the average home having 4.1 Bibles. But owning a Bible is different from reading it—and pollsters might be surprised by what happens when many Americans do.Most polls, surveys, and studies that have examined the Bible's influence have looked at views of its inspiration and methods of interpretation. Gallup, for example, has for four decade…

Endangering the Troops

Hello friends, Endangering the Troops November 30, 2011 “You should not cut the military budget that will endanger the troops; our military only responds in self defense, they will not a have a way to defend themselves." Shared a sister with much feeling who just got returned from the Special Forces in Iraq, I responded, “I didn't think of that. We should bring them home first that makes sense. I will have to change my flyer" She added, "Yes lets bring them home first, and in addition the private contractors make several times more pay than the soldiers, there has not been a cost of living increase for them for several years now. The politicians are the big problem.This is not right; the soldiers are risking their lives.” This conversation occurred at the end of my presentation at the Eugene Oregon, Quaker church. “Can you help me, said Pedro Avila in his broken English in Portland Amtrak Station; I responded do you spe…

Put on the Spot

Hello friends, Put on the Spot November 27,2011

" What would you do if you were president when the Japanese invaded Japan? ask a sister a number of times putting me on the spot at the Mt. View Mennonite Church in a suburb of Los Angeles, I hesitated trying to think what to say, I finally responded, "I don't know what I would do, I would have to think about that. I have heard that our government knew it was going to happen but they wanted to let it happen so they could rally the people of the united States to support the government going to war. I wonder if that was not the truth."

Afterwards a brother from the audience who had obviously studied that history, said to me in detail,"You were right the government did know about it beforehand."

I went on to say, " Often people ask, " What would you do if someone attack your family?" We are putting lots of effort in to how to make war and so little into how to ma…

Why didn't they shoot you ?

Dear Friend, Why didn't they shoot you ? 10/13/11

“Why didn’t they shoot you? Asked one of the students at Bethany Mennonite Christian School. I responded, might be because I am an American. But my sense is it is a lot because people are praying for us. At my talks over the years I run into people who say they heard about CPT and they have been praying for us. I sense more and more over the years these prayers have not only provided protection, but also they have made our work effective beyond what I will ever imagine.

Another questioned “Were you ever scared?” I answered, “When we run into any of the guerrilla, paramilitaries, or the Colombian Army and they point their guns at us we never know what they might do, I must say fear runs through me. Though thanks be to God they haven’t shot at us yet.”

We usually talk with them then, and we get to know them. And once that happens, I think they see us as people, and than it is hard for them to shoot some …

"Can we get in?"

Dear Friends , "What’s going on? Colombia ( a little late) May 25, 2011



"What’s going on? Can we get in?" I ask Olga the teacher who had invited me to share in her class. Olga replied, "The students are on strike, the mayor paid a company a month to sweep the floors, clean the bathrooms, the cafeteria, etc. in the schools. and they have not done it. And to the surprise of everyone a group of students are calling a strike in protest and not letting the school function today . Guess we will have to forget about your two presentations. Sorry,"CIMG1985 (Medium).JPG

Here are a few of the upper class high school students who have therefore taken it on to close the school for a day to get the mayor's attention. The signs say, "For our space", "We want our cafeteria". To the far left is Ebertys with Olga next to her.



"Well, how about we go have some coffee at that little shop across the street?"…

They not only had to flee, but they lost everything!

They not only had to flee, but they lost everything!


Dear Friends,

"Having to flee our land because of fear of getting shot by one of the armed groups has been really hard. We no longer have a way to make money or provide ourselves with food by farming yucca, corn and such. Therefore many of us have had to sell our land to people outside our community to survive. It really has us in a hard spot. When everyone was from the community, if someone from the community had a mango or avocado tree, I could feel free to help myself. We just shared. Now we don´t know our neighbors so we can´t feel free to do that. Because many farmers are not producing the staples we depend on the prices have gone up, which makes it even harder to afford to buy them," explained Alexander of Mompujan. This helped me understand the dilemma farmers were in because of the war. They not only had to flee, but they lost everything. War is awful.

As part of the new Victims Law that was just signed by President…
Peacemaking via Politics May 25, 2011
foto for letters.jpg

Dear Friends,

"Roberto, are you running for the city council of Barranca?" I asked. He answered, "Yes." I responded, "How did you come to that?"

Roberto's reply:
"Barranca is a city of 500,000 that spends millions each year. My presence on the council will help bring transparency and honesty to Barranca. Instead of the money going into the pockets of companies and friends of the powers that be I will help see that more goes for its intended purposes. I think my presence on the council could bring big improvements in schools, health care, and roads.

"I have always had an interest in politics, I feel called to give it a try. I was in the election 3 years ago. In the fist count I was winning but in the second count I wasn´t even mentioned. I think this was because I did not have someone there watching the vote count. Another candidate got many of my votes discounted illegally. This happene…

God in Colombian Politcs

God in Colombian Politcs

Dear friends,

Here are some reflections from some conversations with some Colombian friends:



People are not black and white the way the world, the movies, and our culture have been telling us. It’s a lie we unconsciously often assume is true. There is good (God created us all and He said it was good) and bad in every one of us. Getting rid of Bin Laden will not make us safer or more secure. Right at the announcement of his death, I thought to myself: “this will only create and raise up even more terrorists.”



Obama announced that we need to be on the alert for a reprisal, so we live in even more fear. As the Bible says, overcome evil with good, not hate or evil, and that is the only thing that works.



An example of this is when President Santos of Colombia, in the week after the election and to the surprise of everyone, met with Venezuela’s president Hugo Chavez to mend the rift that the former Colombian president Uribe had made. This rift inhibited ongoing business…

Great News from Las Pavas!

Great News from Las Pavas!



Almost two years after police and military forces evicted the 123 families from the Las Pavas farm, and one month after the community returned to their land, Colombia's highest court has ruled in favor of the community.



The ruling states that the eminent domain process initiated by National Institute for Rural Development (INCODER) in 2006 was legal and that the eviction of the families was illegal and therefore the land be returned to the families. The families started farming the land after then owner Jesus Emilio Escobar, said to be uncle of infamous drug lord Pablo Escobar abandoned the land in 1997. In 2003, Escobar returned to the land with armed men threatening the families with violence if they didn't leave. In spite of the eminent domain process, Escobar sold the land to two palm companies which in July of 2009 evicted the families with the help of the national police.

The Constitutional Courts decision trumps all other lower court rulings tha…

A Moment of Peace in Colombia

A Moment of Peace in Colombia May 5, 2011

Friends,

Yesterday I did a presentation at the "Moment for Peace" at the Mennonite Church, which is an outreach to persons who have had to leave their homes because of threats or deaths of family members by paramilitaries, Colombian army, or the guerrillas.

Three that I talked to have had to leave their families behind; all had children. Another had all her family killed. She wanted me to help her get to the USA, which I was unable to do. It is almost impossible for this to happen, on account of US government policy.

So I ask you to be like Moses, who for 10 times - even though he felt inadequate because he stuttered and thought Pharaoh would not listen - was told by God to go talk to Pharaoh anyway. Remember 600,000 heads of households with their families were freed from slavery as a result.

Take a minute every week and go to fcnl.org and with one click tell all your government representatives to stop giving a million dollars…
On Thu, Apr 28, 2011 at 10:34 AM, Jim Fitz wrote:

foto for letters.jpg



Dear friends: Off to Colombia and 2011 Annual Report April 26,2011



I fly to Bogotá May 2nd, returning on June 20th. There I will be giving about 35 presentations to Mennonite Brethren, Brethren in Christ, and Mennonite congregations and many schools to encourage them in their peacemaking in the midst of the 50 year civil war.



This may not seem as exciting as when I was on the front lines with CPT, but I feel this is very important too. I will be planting seeds of encouragement for many people in Bogota, Cali, Sincelejo, and Chocó, Colombia to get involved in Peacemaking. In the long run, this will be much more effective than my being a solo peacemaker.



This year I began sharing and giving out an envelope with How to help end the wars with One click, Do you know enough to enlist? And the basic CPT brochure. I encourage people to pray and tell their government representati…

Off to Colombia

Dear friends: Off to Colombia and 2011 Annual Report April 30,2011

I fly to Bogotá May 2nd, returning on June 20th. There I will be giving about 35 presentations to Mennonite Brethren, Brethren in Christ, and Mennonite congregations and many schools to encourage them in their peacemaking in the midst of the 50 year civil war.

This may not seem as exciting as when I was on the front lines with CPT, but I feel this is very important too. I will be planting seeds of encouragement for many people in Bogota, Cali, Sincelejo, and Chocó, Colombia to get involved in Peacemaking. In the long run, this will be much more effective than my being a solo peacemaker.

This year I began sharing and giving out an envelope with How to help end the wars with One click, Do you know enough to enlist? And the basic CPT brochure. I encourage people to pray and tell their government representatives to stop wasting 2 million dollars a minute for the military as is the plan in the new …
Building Reconciliation and Closeness in Relationships April 8, 2011

God has made us to be intimate and close with our friends and partners. Often In the midst of conflicts we are really seeking closeness. Unaware of this, often one person withdraws and the other gets angry at the withdrawing. Then, the more the other gets angry, the more the other withdraws. The more we do this, the more it separates us rather than unites us.

However, if we step back and become aware that the problem is not the conflict, but that each is protesting the possible loss of closeness, we can much better work on the root of the problem.
Sue Johnson tells how one can do that in her book “Hold Me Tight”

Another example is the way we hesitate at talking to certain people about hard things. I find it helpful to realize it is perhaps because we fear loosing our relationship with them. Johnson points out, the more we do this, little by little, we will find it builds closeness rather than separation and the ea…