Presbyterian Church of Colombia Issues Peace Declaration

The Iglesia Presbiteriana de Colombia has issued a Peace Declaration in the midst of the Colombian presidential elections. It is linked here in English and in Spanish.

On June 15, 2014 current President Juan Manuel Santos won a second term against his challenger Oscar Ivan Zuluanga during the second ballot run-off. The IPC was very concerned about this particular election since during his first term President Santos has begun peace talks (while imperfect) with the FARC, the largest rebel group, and his challenger, Zuluanga was not in favor of the peace process. Many felt that this presidential election was a referendum on the talks themselves. These talks are ongoing in Havana, Cuba and there are exploratory talks beginning with the ELN rebel group as well that were just announced this June. The IPC remains committed to its ministry of preparation for a time of peace. They are focused throughout the life of their church on the creation of a culture of peace and in offering this evangelism in the communities in which they serve. It is the policy of our church, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), to see a negotiated peace in Colombia and to be supportive of talks like the ones that have begun.

I urge you to read this important document from the Iglesia Presbiterina de Colombia carefully and prayerfully. It has much to offer us as we continue the process post-General Assembly in our church of being stewards of peace and repairers of relationship. It is my prayer that this document will propel each of us to write to the leadership of the IPC to let them know of our prayers for their country during this important time and to deepen and renew again our commitment to the oftentimes difficult and long term work of nonviolence.

May Jesus Christ, Prince of Peace bless our beloved sisters and brothers in Colombia and their unflinching pursuit of peace.

Rev. Shannan Vance-Ocampo
National Committee of PPF