Day 20: NPR

1111 North Capitol St., NE
Washington, DC 20002

To whom it may concern,

My name is Emmett Eldred. 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 to pubic figures and media over the next year about the Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN), the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria.

It is my hope that when you learn more about the EYN’s remarkable story, you will feel inspired, like I have been, to share it with your readers. Your readers, especially your Christian readers and readers concerned with world affairs, are certain to find the story of the EYN both invigorating and profoundly challenging.

I’m sure you recall the 276 schoolgirls from northern Nigeria who were kidnapped by Boko Haram. They were the topic of national media attention and the #BringBackOurGirls campaign. Three fourths of those girls belong to the EYN. In fact, few groups have people have suffered from the violence in Nigeria more than the EYN, and their situation continues to worsen.

However, it is not just the EYN’s suffering that makes their story so remarkable, 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 have been faithful in fulfilling their commitment of peace in the midst of terrible trials.

Faced with great hatred, fear, and division, the EYN consistently responds with far greater love, courage, and community. They understand that as Christians they must be beacons of Christ’s love in a climate darkened by violence. This means being leaders in working to restore community, dialogue, and the dignity of all Nigerians, even when it means sacrifice.

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

I hope you will learn more about the EYN and feature their story across all their avenues. The EYN represent the hopeful undercurrent at play in a tragic situation. Though they are closely related to a news story that many in America feel deeply about, they haven’t received the attention and support that their inspired ministry deserves and needs. There is a possibility for peace in Nigeria, but it will only become a reality if we partner with the EYN.

With thanks and the love of Christ,

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


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