Day 11: David Giovannelli

Daniel Giovannelli
Global Solutions Pittsburgh
305 34th Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15201

Dear Mr. Giovannelli,

My name is Emmett Eldred, and I am one of many youth and young adults who belong to an active, passionate movement within the Church of the Brethren to better reflect the love and teachings of Jesus in our everyday lives. I am writing to you as part of a series of over 1000 letters that I will write over the next year to public figures and community leaders about the Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN), the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria.

I am writing to you and Global Solutions Pittsburgh because the story of the EYN is one that you could develop into an inspiring and mobilizing program about peace formation and tactical nonviolence for your educational and community audiences.

I’m sure you remember the 276 schoolgirls from northern Nigeria who were kidnapped by Boko Haram. Roughly three-fourths of those girls belong to the EYN. In fact, few groups have suffered from the violence as severely as the EYN, and their situation continues to worsen.

What makes the EYN’s story so remarkable, however, isn’t just their suffering, but also the inspiring, courageous way that they have responded to their suffering. The Church of the Brethren, including the EYN, is a historic peace church. The EYN has remained faithful in its commitment to peace, despite such terrible hardship.

In the face of such great hatred, fear, and division, the EYN consistently responds with even greater love, courage, and community. They have developed a tactical, resistive nonviolence that allows them to be creative and steadfast in seeking to shine love onto a situation darkened by terrible violence. They are truly leaders in working to restore community, dialogue, and the dignity of all Nigerians, even though it means great sacrifice.

These people fill me with hope, and I will never stop advocating for them.

Global Solutions Pittsburgh needs a program on peace formation through tactical nonviolence.It is a universal truth that nonviolence is the only approach to diffusing conflict that creates the potential for lasting change. By developing a program about the EYN, people will hear about the EYN and feel mobilized to action, and you will enrich and broaden your curriculum.

With thanks and the love of Christ,

Emmett Eldred
Carnegie Mellon University SMC# 2046
Pittsburgh, PA 15289

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