The Peace and Justice Foundation
11160 Veirs Mill Rd.
Ste. L -15, PMB 298
Silver Spring, MD. 20902
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 public figures and community leaders over the next year about the Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN), the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria.
You probably remember the 276 schoolgirls from northern Nigeria who were kidnapped by Boko Haram. About 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. Just today, we received reports that EYN’s headquarters have been overtaken by Boko Haram.
However, what makes the EYN’s story so inspiring is not only their suffering, but also their inspiring response to their suffering. Despite their own suffering, the EYN have been incredible ambassadors for peace in Nigeria. They understand that they must combat the causes of violence in Nigeria, rather than focus their energies on the perpetrators of violence. They are making important investments in building human security moving forward, and providing essential serves to refugees and other victims of violence, including protecting and assisting Muslim victims who many other Christians in Nigeria blame for the unrest.
In the face of great hatred, fear, and division, the EYN have responded with far greater love, courage, and community. They believe that they must be beacons of Christ’s love to a community 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 look forward to communicating with you further about how you can partner with the EYN by supporting their ministry of reconciliation and sharing their story. The EYN represent the possibility of peace in Nigeria, but they need our partnership and awareness to make that possibility a reality. Please don’t hesitate to contact me in whichever way is most convenient for you.
With thanks and the love of Christ,
Carnegie Mellon University SMC# 2046
Pittsburgh, PA 15289