Christian Reformed churches in Canada are ramping up efforts to push for peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan.
The church’s mobilization and advocacy comes in the wake of the release of the Manley Panel report, which was commissioned by the Canadian government to examine the country’s future role in Afghanistan.
The panel’s report has drawn widespread discussion and debate across the country, said Mike Hogeterp, spokesperson for the Committee for Contact with the Government (CCG), a justice ministry of the Christian Reformed churches in Canada.
“It’s time for a deepened plan for peace and justice in Afghanistan” says Hogeterp. “Now is an important time for CRC people to have their say on Afghanistan.”
The CCG, says Hogeterp, plans to encourage faithful Christians to take political action through its mobilization website, www.crcna.org/ccg, which includes broad peace-building resources, instructions, sample letters for government contact, and liturgical reflections on peace and hope.
“True peace in Afghanistan must start on a foundation of reconciliation, hope, and a very real sense of trust and healing among Afghans,” says Hogeterp.
The CCG’s advocacy has been inspired by the CRC’s position on peace building, first laid out in Synod’s 2006 report on War and Peace. That report calls all CRC members to be “agents of shalom in a war-torn world.”