12.02.08 18:30 Il y a: 4 yrs

Reflections by Graham Gerald McGeoch


Graham McGeoch greets a young member of the Kalenjin community in Mauche, in the Molo district, near the Rift Valley city of Nakuru, Kenya.

Mr Graham Gerald McGeoch, ministerial candidate of the Church of Scotland and member of the WCC central and executive committees, United Kingdom, was part of the Living Letters solidarity team sent to Kenya by the World Council of Churches (WCC) from 30 January to 3 February 2008.


Read his letter:


An open letter from a "living letter" visit to Kenya, February 2008


Grace and peace be with you!


Grace for the present and peace for the journey…


Dear friends in Kenya, thank you for your warm and generous hospitality in a time of violence, turbulence and uncertainty. Hospitality of strangers in a strange land (it was my first visit to Kenya) and the warmth of friendship, reaching out to welcome "living letters", brought an understanding through which we can affirm: "we are not alone".


Dear churches in Kenya, thank you for openly sharing with us your vulnerabilities. Thank you for the humility to recognise that the people of God have, in some instances, acted in a partisan manner. In some places the unintended consequence of this partisan action has contributed to violence.


Dear National Council of Churches in Kenya, thank you for the prophetic call to peace, justice and reconciliation in your land. Your desire to mediate conflicts, heal the churches and local communities and reconcile diversity encouraged very much the "living letters" and is indeed good news to the people of Kenya. I was reminded of the words of St Paul… "my power is made perfect in your weakness…"


Dear politicians in Kenya, thank you for receiving the "living letters" and so generously giving of substantial time to our dialogues. Thank you for your commitment to the dialogue mediated by Kofi Annan, former United Nations Secretary General. May you take steps towards the immediate cessation of violence and prevent the continued "drift into the abyss" highlighted by Hon. Raila Odinga. May you build on the recognition by Vice President Kolonzo that the churches have a role to play in reconciliation.


Dear activists in Kenya, thank you for your vision of "bread and freedom" for the people of Kenya and the search for a more equitable distribution of resources. Justice, Peace and the Integrity of Creation must continue to uphold both the dignity of human beings and the voyage of discovery of being human in Kenya.


Dear women of Kenya, thank you for waiting patiently for us in Nairobi while we returned from the rural areas. Your work for peace and your response to the humanitarian crisis in Kenya which seeks to enfold in a warm embrace the suffering of the "internally displaced persons" - human beings; mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, children - brings hope to Kenya of a new tomorrow. A tomorrow in which perhaps the voice of women will be heard in peace negotiations and in the caring and organisation of local communities.


Dear young people of Kenya, you are not alone. The "living letters" heard your suffering and your excluded voice. With Solo7 in the Kibera slums your cry has become our prayer: "Kenyans want Peace". "No justice, No peace". Young artists from slums and rural areas express peace through art, offering alternatives to a new generation. And young people are reminded of the "responsibility to protect" as elaborated by the WCC, to turn from revenge and build communities of peace.


Dear World Council of Churches, thank you for the invitation to be a "living letter". Thank you for bringing the churches together to pray together and to be together; to listen and to learn, to share approaches and challenges in overcoming violence and peace making in Kenya.


Dear international community, thank you for your commitment to Kenya, for your response to the urgent needs of displaced people and those affected by violence. Church leaders in Kenya appeal to the international community "not to cut aid at this time", but to continue to work with all Kenyans to respond to urgent needs.


Dear friend, thank you for taking the time to read this letter. In all of Kenya, by people from all walks of life, the "living letters" of the WCC were requested to "pray for Kenya": to pray for peace, to pray for justice, to pray for reconciliation. May your prayers join with those of the church around the world and with the people of Kenya.



Grace and Peace,


Graham McGeoch



More information on the Living Letters visit to Kenya


Photo story


National Council of Churches in Kenya


Background information on the Living Letters visits