VISITING COLOMBIA on 8-11 August, a World Council of Churches (WCC) delegation has expressed solidarity with the Colombian government, churches and people as they collaborate in the design, implementation and advocacy for the construction of peace in the country.

Led by the Rev Dr Kenneth Mtata, WCC programme director for Public Witness and Diakonia, the delegation isl meeting state officials, ecumenical partners, and the Latin American Conference of Bishops; as well as attending the International Conference for Reconciliation in Colombia, an event organised by DiPaz (Interchurch Dialogue for Peace in Colombia).

“This visit represents a huge opportunity for the WCC to affirm its support for processes leading to just peace with its member churches and ecumenical partners who are actively engaged on the ground.The Colombia peace process offers a meaningful promise to a world ravaged by conflict and wars”, said Mtata.

Mtata will offer a keynote address at the conference, which will also feature conversations with government representatives and other actors involved in the peace process. Conference participants and speakers will address the status and challenges of the peace processes and socio-legal dialogues with armed groups in Colombia; as well as ecumenical international experiences and learnings in peacebuilding. Discussions will also acknowledge the Cuban ecumenical movement for its contributions to the peace process in Colombia.

During the visit, Mtata will be accompanied by the Rev Vilma Yanez, from the Presbyterian Church of Colombia, and a member of the WCC central committee; Dr HC.Humberto Shikiya, WCC regional representative to the Colombia peace process; and Dr Marcelo Schneider, WCC staff.

* Read the letter from WCC General Secretary, the Rev Prof Dr Jerry Pillay, to the Columbian President Gustavo Petro Urrego,expressing deep appreciation for the Colombian government’s initiatives for peace here.

* Source: World Council of Churches