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SOA Watch Lisa Sullivan (left)
with SOA Watch founder Fr. Roy
Bourgeois meet with Ecuadoran
President Rafael Correa
Sometimes in the struggle for justice and peace you can get down, feeling there is just too much happening - militarism in our schools, the increased use of Killer Drones, the movement of money and resources of the local Catholic Church away from neighbors of those most in need and violence in our city and in our world. Sometimes, like today, I am tempted to say ‘no more’; I want to know no more.
But at these low moments there is also a ray of hope. Today I received a notice from SOAWatch that the President of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, announced that Ecuador will no longer send its soldiers to the School of the Americas (SOA/ WHINSEC). SOA, at Fort Benning and Columbus, has been a symbol of training military in Latin American for the militarization of the Americas. It has been called the School of Assassins for all the death and torture of liberation forces in Latin America. There are other countries in South American that have announced they would not send their soldiers to SOA, but today was a big announcement.
I am proud to call the two persons in the picture from SOAWatch in the picture, Lisa Sullivan and Roy Bourgeois, friends. They are both optimistic people that have given me strength and hope in my personal struggles to keep on ‘seeking the truth.’ I have been blessed to know persons here in Milwaukee, around the USA and the world that are just good persons and who share the same passion for justice and peace that many of us do.
I was proud to drive one of them today to a clinic for a MRI, an ordinary person who has, in his own right, done extraordinary things. I am having lunch tomorrow with an African-American woman who has lived through all the racial tensions in the Catholic Church in Milwaukee. I have heard from a few friends today by email who struggle with the same vision.
I am saying all this not to name drop but to say if we are seeking justice and peace we will find other persons on the same quest. Together we can make peace and justice one step at a time. This morning it was at a meeting in Ecuador when Lisa and Roy met with the president and his staff. Hope renews itself each day. Today it was in Ecuador and here.