What is the hope for this generation? Who will stand and protect these innocent children in the midst of violence?
Article from Transforming Community for Social Change (TCSC)
Roses are very beautiful flowers; they have a pleasant scent and a smooth velvety texture. But to pluck a rose, one must endure the pain of the thorns around the stem. This is a metaphor of peace work. Peace itself is a beautiful thing to have; if the world had it, it would be a veritable paradise. But the challenge is that to get there, we have to look at all aspects of conflict. When we started peacebuilding in Mt Elgon, the joy is that to date the little peace that is in the area was a big step towards healing. The community integration of some of the militia members and the impact of how they work in society has made it possible for the children to go to school, women to do their usual farming for food production, while men engage in day-to-day life to make ends meet. Continue reading “A Rose on Mt. Elgon”→
Friends World Committee for Consultation (FWCC) has closed the successful campaign to help Rwanda Yearly Meeting address an urgent need to install lightning rods on 35 buildings (at around £400 each) in Rwanda Yearly Meeting following several fatal lightning strikes affecting churches, schools and other buildings. The government decreed that they must install lightning rods on all their buildings before the end of March.
Thanks to the generosity of Friends around the world, the goal of £14,000 has almost been reached, including funds raised by the Africa Section and that collected in the Section of the Americas, Europe and Middle East, and Asia West Pacific. We anticipate more will come in in the coming weeks, bringing the total to that needed by Rwanda Yearly Meeting.
With the assistance Friends have given, Rwandan Friends will be able to meet new government safety requirements (brought in at very short notice), keep buildings in use, and continue to meet as Friends in safety in churches, schools, and the Friends Peace House in Kigali (above).
Healing and Rebuilding Our Communities (HROC) regularly holds workshops for university students and vulnerable youths. Here is a testimonial from one participant.
Diane from “Kora iciza” organization
I was born to a second wife of my father. This was due to the fact that his first wife didn’t gave birth to the number of boys that my father wanted. From this second wife I’m the first born and a woman. It was a serious disappointment to my father to see I was not a boy. Since then, my father never cared about me as a daughter. My mother was mistreated day and night, regretting why she had married him. Only boys had a place in my father’s mind. I asked my mother why things were that way. She told me that he never been proud of me as he expected to have a boy from her and was not the case. When I learnt about that, this made me a nervous female and a frown was constantly on my face for long time as I observed the level of love my father expressed towards my two young brothers. I was very angry at him and at myself. My question to God was why had he given me a father like this one? Continue reading “A Testimony from a HROC Training in Burundi”→
Friends in Rwanda have an urgent need to raise funds following a decree by the government that they must install lightning rods on all their buildings before the end of March. This comes after several fatal lightning strikes affecting churches, schools and other buildings. Lightning storms are very common in Rwanda.
To meet the requirements, Rwanda Yearly Meeting needs to buy and install 35 lightning rods at a cost of around £400 each. Without financial support from Friends in other countries, they will be unable to do this, and they will be forced to close their churches, schools and other buildings, including the Friends Peace House in Kigali. Continue reading “Urgent appeal by Friends in Rwanda”→
The Spring 2018 issue of PeaceWays newsletter, Friends Peace Teams bi-annual report on our peacebuilding, reconciliation and healing activities worldwide, is available online. It features several updates from our projects in AGLI as well as information about Friends Peace Teams initiatives in Asia/West Pacific and in Latin America.
I had never danced in church before. I knew, of course, that some Friends dance in worship. I had participated in worship at the Friends World Committee for Consultation Plenary in Peru in 2016, during which some African Friends danced, but I didn’t feel comfortable joining them. I had arrived in Kigali very early on that Sunday morning and settled into my room at about two a.m. Exhausted from the journey, I had not planned on attending worship that day. However, as the sun rose higher in the sky, and I heard people moving about, I woke up despite myself. Then, I heard a sound I couldn’t quite identify. Little by little, I realized that it was the musicians and the chorus rehearsing for service in the Friends compound. Something told me to get up and join in, and I did. I walked the short distance from my room, slipped into church, was escorted to a seat, and followed the service. When the congregants rose, sang, and danced, I held the songbook and did my best to follow along. And soon, my spine and my limbs followed too, as the joyous worship music enveloped the sanctuary. Continue reading “Thoughts upon my return from Africa”→
The Fall/Winter 2017-18 issue of PeaceWays newsletter, Friends Peace Teams bi-annual report on our peacebuilding, reconciliation and healing activities worldwide, is available online. It features several updates from our projects in AGLI as well as an invitation to the two International Training for Healing and Rebuilding Our Communities seminars we are offering in Rwanda in 2018.