Long Island Alliance for Peaceful Alternatives
P.O. Box 301
Garden City, NY 11530
Dear Ms. Melkonian,
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 1000 letters that I will write to public figures and community leaders over the next year about the Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN), the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria.
I hope you can learn about the EYN and partner in the ministry of peace in any way that you can. 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 in Nigeria as severely as the EYN, and their situation continues to worsen.
However, what makes their story so important for you to hear and incorporate into your programming is not only the suffering of the EYN, but also their courageous response to their suffering. The Church of the Brethren, including the EYN, is a historic peace church. The EYN have been steadfast and faithful in their commitment to building peace, despite their trials.
In the face of great hatred, fear, and division, the EYN continue to respond with far greater love, hope, and courage. They understand that they must live out their faith as beacons of Christ’s love to a landscape darkened by violence. They have become leaders in working to restore community, dialogue, and the dignity of all Nigerians.
These people fill me with hope, and I will never stop advocating for them.
I hope you will learn more about the EYN and partner with them in building peace. The EYN represent the possibility of peace in Nigeria, but they need our partnership and awareness to make that possibility a reality. Please, share their story with your members, include them in your programming, and invest in their courageous and creative ministry.
With thanks and the love of Christ,
Carnegie Mellon University SMC# 2046
Pittsburgh, PA 15289