26 East Market Street
Iowa City, Iowa 52245
Dear Mr. Djoken,
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 have been writing over the course of a year to public figures and community leaders about the Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN), the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria.
I hope you will stand with the EYN. The EYN have been more severely damaged by the terrorist organization Boko Haram than any other group or church. Nearly 100,000 church members have been displaced, many have been killed, and dozens of churches have been destroyed. Of the 276 schoolgirls famously abducted from Chibok, three fourths are members of the EYN. A few weeks ago, the EYN headquarters was attacked and overtaken by Boko Haram.
Despite their suffering, the EYN have chosen to be the Church in northern Nigeria, and we need to stand with them. Whereas nearly every other organization has left the area, the EYN are committed to nonviolent resistance and community development to both stand up to Boko Haram and address the broader, systemic causes of violence in Nigeria.
The EYN are also providing essential refugee services not just for their own members, but for other persecuted Christians and equally persecuted Muslims. The EYN are committed to rebuilding and empowering communities. They understand that sustainable peace requires strong leadership and courageous action. They have chosen to be leaders in working to shape communities towards reconciliation. They have chosen the courage it takes to build peace.
The EYN are committed to building peace by answering the hate they have been shown with far more powerful love. When I look at the EYN, I see Jesus, and I know that I have to stand with them. These people fill me with hope, and I will never stop advocating for them.
Will you stand with the EYN? Please contact me, and tell me how we can work together to support the EYN. I’ve included links where you can learn more about my movement and project and also where you can learn more about the EYN and donate to the Nigerian Crisis fund. Please, stand with the EYN. Show your support for their ministry of reconciliation by donating and sharing their story.
With thanks and the love of Christ,
Carnegie Mellon University SMC# 2046
Pittsburgh, PA 15289