“Juntos como hermanos,
miembros de la iglesia
al encuentro del Senor.”
Together as brothers and sisters,
members of the church
we gather together
to meet with God.
Words of a Catholic gathering song. Words of peace. But this time it’s not just words, it’s action as well. Today, our group had the opportunity to witness and be a part of an unprecedented stand against the rising violence in Guatemala City. Una Marcha de Paz – A March for Peace. Four groups marched from four different Catholic locations in the city to the plaza at the center at 4pm.
Before long the plaza was filled with 10,000 people singing and declaring in solidarity that they desire peace. Cardinal Quezada spoke and gave the mass. Our group was unable to stay for the entire thing but we were impacted by what we were a part of. There were people from all parts of the city – young and old, indigenous, mestizos and ladinos – all wearing white, carrying banners, waving flags and singing songs of peace.
So often back home I hear talk of peace and justice and its importance today, but it feels disconnected from the daily reality of our world. Many times in my Spanish classes with Don Clymer we talked about the desperation, injustices and violence in Latin America. We read articles and discussed the problems and our desires for peace. But it is disheartening when it doesn’t feel like there is anything we can do besides hope and pray. And often times that has to be enough.
To actually witness a stand for peace and be a part of it today was an incredible experience. Several times I was moved to tears. I know that God heard his people today and that gives me hope for Guatemala City and for peace.