Shine the Light: A Call to Witness in a Time of War

Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) invites supporters around the world to help "Shine the Light" on torture, hostage-taking and abuse of detainees in an ongoing effort to expose the shadowy scourge of war and end the U.S. occupation of Iraq.

 

Beginning January 15 – the birthday of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. – through January 29, 2006, CPT will carry out a series of dramatic processions

in Washington, DC starting at key institutions which bear responsibility for war-making and ending with a brief prayer service at the White House. Each day,

candle-carrying participants will walk in prayerful silence guided by a torchbearer shining the light on a hooded detainee who symbolically represents all persons held captive by war and occupation.

 

In 1967, reflecting on the U.S. war in Viet Nam, Dr. King exhorted those gathered at the Riverside Church in New York, saying: "I speak as a citizen of the world, for the world as it stands aghast at the path we have taken. The great initiative in this war is ours. The initiative to stop it must be ours." In that spirit CPT encourages supporters to join this effort in Washington and beyond.

 

COME TO DC:

Church groups, youth groups, seniors, university students, peace clubs, community groups: Join CPT's team in Washington for a day, two days, or the entire two weeks.á Bring battery-powered candles and "shine the light" around the Pentagon, the State Department, the U.S. Capitol, the CIA, and other government and private institutions who share complicity in torture, hostage-taking and abuse of detainees.

 

Every morning, the DC team will gather for prayer and preparation. Each afternoon's two-mile procession will march around the institution chosen for that day – mindful of the biblical encirclements of Jericho when the walls came tumbling down – then convene at the White House for a concluding prayer service.

 

For more information, contact Cliff Kindy at 312-933-0546 (cell phone) or by

e-mail at light@cpt.org.

 

SHINE THE LIGHT AT HOME:

Organize processions led by a torchbearer illuminating a hooded "captive" to expose the institutions in your community that sponsor, support, or benefit from torture, abuse of detainees and war-making. Challenge legislators, government

officials, and corporate executives to change course. Highlight the devastating cost of this war sustained by victims on many fronts.

 

Register your "shine the light" actions at

www.cpt.org/iraq/shinethelight.php. Sample prayers, leaflets and media releases are also available at that site.

 

While the DC portion of this campaign contemplates an ending date of January 29, local communities may wish to "Shine the Light" throughout the Lenten season or the period leading up to March 19-20 – the third anniversary of the war. (See www.aglobalcall.org for details about "A Global Call for Nonviolent Civil Resistance to End the U.S.-Led Military Occupation of Iraq.")

 

We hope this campaign might provide a framework by which Christians, Muslims, Jews, and people of all faiths can continue the outpouring of supportive actions for justice which have accompanied CPT since four of our workers went missing in Iraq on November 26.

 

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