Living Letters solidarity visit to Colombia

6 - 12 December 2008

This Afro-Colombian girl was displaced from her home following fights between the FARC guerilla and paramilitaries in 2002. Photo: Tommy Ramm, DEA/ACT International

A team of church representatives from around the world paid a solidarity visit to churches, ecumenical organizations and civil society movements in Colombia from 6 to 12 December.

One of the most violent countries in the world, Colombia has been in midst of a conflict between the army, two groups of left-wing rebels and right-wing paramilitaries since the 1960s. Drug-related crime adds to a situation that the United Nations has described as one of the world's worst humanitarian crises. During the decades-long conflict tens of thousands of Colombians have been killed while some three million have been forced from their homes.

Visiting the country as "Living Letters" on behalf of the World Council of Churches (WCC) the international team was hosted by the Ecumenical Network of Colombia.

Living Letters are small ecumenical teams visiting a country to listen, learn, share approaches and help to confront challenges in order to overcome violence, promote and pray for peace.