Christian Group for Reflection and Action Report on violence in Africa

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Lets us live!

Published by the Christian Group of Reflection and Action (GCRA) on violent attacks, following the international and ecumenical meeting held from 17 to 27 July 2012 at Bukavu

Since 1994 the countries in the Great Lakes of Africa have been the theatre of a level of violence beyond anything witnessed before…The Churches and NGOs denounce violations of human rights and organise support networks for victims. They can only do so to the extent that victims themselves dare to go public, despite the fear that they will be rejected by their spouses and stigmatised by their community. And this is precisely the problem and allows violent attacks to proliferate: the silence of the very numerous victims and the quasi general impunity of the perpetrators. In those societies which are very largely Christian, believers need to have points of reference in both pastoral and ethical fields. Whatever the reasons, the Churches are seen by the faithful to be too cautious in dealing with all this cruelty, suffering and banality of horror. They are lacking in a point of reference confronted with this absolute evil which has gone on for so long in the whole Eastern Congo. In fact the victims of all this violence include children and men as well as women. The perpetrators themselves are often wounded and manipulated people.

This is the reason why a small group of Christians (Christian Group for Reflection and Action), made up of Protestants and Catholics, gathered together from the 17th to the 27th of July in Bukavu, in the eastern DRC, to reflect together on what message they could bring to communities, victims and perpetrators, as well as what Christian attitudes they could highlight.”

Read the full report

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