Dear Reverend Raushenbush,
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 media over the next year about the Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN) the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria.
It it important for you and your readers to hear the inspiring, deeply challenging story of the EYN and respond with practical, positive action. 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 grow worse.
What makes the EYN’s story so remarkable, however, is not only their suffering, but the courageous, faithful way that they have responded to their suffering. The Church of the Brethren, including the EYN, is a historic peace church. The EYN have lived up to their commitment to peace, despite their horrific trials.
In the face of great hatred, fear, and division, the EYN responds with even greater love, courage, and community. They understand that they are to beacons of Christ’s love in a climate darkened by violence. They have shown tremendous leadership in using nonviolence and creativity as tactics towards restoring community, dialogue, and the dignity of all Nigerians, though it means great sacrifice.
These people inspire me, and I will never stop advocating for them.
I hope that you will learn more about the EYN and then feature them in the Huffington Post. Your readers need to hear the story of the EYN, not just because it is inspiring, but because it stirs action, and most importantly because it is profoundly challenging. By reading about the EYN, your readers will have to ask a question that I constantly ask myself: Could I be so faithful?
With thanks and the love of Christ,
Carnegie Mellon University SMC# 2046
Pittsburgh, PA 15289