I want to invite you all to Reconciler this Sunday to hear this incredible story.
The Valencia Gil family, like so many others in Colombia, has been caught in the middle of the complex civil war. They have never participated in any of the violence, which pits the Colombian military and their right-wing paramilitary allies against guerrillas. Rather, William and Marina have sought to break the silence of the church and the people in the face of horrific human rights violations. Because of their human rights work, they have been under threat in Colombia and have had to move to the United States for a period of six-months. They may not be able to move back to their home community where their children and grandchildren live for a very long time. In their time in the US, they wish to build connections between church communities in order to support the work of the peacemaking church in Colombia.
Jose William Valencia Caicedo is a pastor of a Mennonite Church and Coordinator of the Commission for Restoration, Life and Peace of the Evangelical Council of Colombia (CEDECOL). Luz Marina Gil de Valencia has traveled with her husband in all of his activities in the areas of armed conflict. She has worked with the Christian Women’s Network for Life and Peace project to lead training workshops on community organization, social work, human rights and international human rights law, and the protection of human rights in conflict areas.
The service begins at 6pm. All are welcome. We meet at Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church, in their side chapel, 1500 W. Elmdale Ave in Chicago at 6pm. Contact me if you have any questions.
Peace and all good things to you.