So often we cannot fathom the dire consequences of wars in faraway places: Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Colombia. The tentacles of militarism reach into people’s everyday lives in these countries, making simple tasks dangerous. Meanwhile, many people can spend days, weeks, months, years without experiencing what war feels like and benefit from the resources in these places . Like doubting Thomas, we say, “Unless I see the mark of the nails in their hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in their sides, I will not believe” (John 20: 25). We can live our whole lives like this – intentionally covering our eyes to not see the ugliness of war. But Jesus call us out of our blindness.
The United States has given billions of dollars in military aid to Colombia, which has been used to perpetuate violence that has no end in sight. Not surprisingly, women are the most negatively impacted by this 50-year conflict. They make up a majority of the five million displaced peoples in the country. They are victims of sexual violence and rape by the many armed groups. They struggle harder for food security and fair wages than men.
This July, CPT Colombia is hosting a delegation focusing on the experiences of women in this war. Delegates will participate in the forty year anniversary celebration of our partners in the Popular Women’s Organization (OFP). The OFP is a grassroots women-led initiative which focuses on female leadership, programs of social uplift, supporting victims of domestic violence as well as resistance to war. Delegates will also visit women leaders in the region and explore what it means to live as a woman in the midst of armed conflict.
Come to Colombia in July with CPT and see the marks of the nails in her hands and put your hand in her side. And believe.
Fundraising expectation: $2500 US / $2600 Canadian, which includes round-trip airfare from a designated U.S. or Canadian city. Those planning to travel from other countries, contact the CPT office.
CPT has limited funds available to assist applicants who otherwise couldn’t participate. CPT is committed to undoing racism and will give preference in funding assistance to applicants from communities which have been disadvantaged by racism.For more information, click here.
To learn more about delegations, click here.