Day7: Antonio de Aguiar Patriota

His Excellency Antonio de Aguiar Patriota
Peacebuilding Support Office
UN Secretariat, 30th floor
New York, NY 10017

Dear Ambassador de Aguiar Patriota,

My name is Emmett Eldred. I am one of many youth and young adults from across the United States who belong to an active, passionate movement within the Church of the Brethren to live lives that better reflect the love and teachings of Jesus. I am writing to you as part of a series of over 1000 letters that I will write to public figures over the next year about the Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN) the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria.

As Chairperson of the UN Peacebuilding Commission, it is important that you to be aware of their story, so that you can factor them into your decisions and initiatives. I’m sure you remember the 276 schoolgirls from northern Nigeria who were kidnapped by Boko Haram. Few people realize that roughly three-fourths of those girls belong to the EYN. In fact, few people have suffered from the violence in Nigeria as severely as the EYN, and their situation continues to grow more dire.

What makes their story truly remarkable isn’t their suffering, but the courageous manner in which they’ve responded to their suffering. The Church of the Brethren, including the EYN, is a historic peace church. Despite their hardship, the EYN has remained firm in its conviction to peace.

They refuse to retaliate for the wrongs that they have endured with more violence. Though they experience great hatred, fear, and division, they respond only with even greater love, courage, and community. They understand that they must be a beacon of Christ’s love in a climate darkened by hate. They have risen to their calling to leadership that renounces the tradition of violence and works towards the restoration of community, dialogue, and the dignity of all Nigerians.

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

They should fill you with hope too. Through your work with the Peacebuilding Commission, I’m sure you’ve come to appreciate the role that faith communities and leaders can have in restoring cooperation and working towards building peace. The EYN is a community of amazing people who have responded to their hardships in a difficult, inspiring way.

I urge you to include the EYN and all people of Nigeria in your thoughts, prayers, and decisions. I truthfully believe that the EYN is one of Nigeria’s best hopes for finding a peaceful solution to its present hardships and the culture of violence that continues to plague it. Invest in the EYN. Pay credit to their courage and creativity by partnering with them to restore peace in Nigeria. As their situation grows more dire and their safety more tenuous, give them help, so they can work towards the future of a better, more peaceful Nigeria.

With thanks and the love of Christ,

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


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s