29 November 2012
Mr. Ronald Breau
Development and Peace
Mr. Michael Casey
Development and Peace
Dear Partners and Friends in the National Council, Development and Peace,
Pax Christi !
We, your Philippine partners, would like to take the opportunity given by your coming National Council meeting to once more reaffirm our solidarity with the entire membership of Development and Peace in your continuing quest for global justice, authentic development, and peace.
We also would like to convey our most heartfelt thanks for the long and faithful partnership Development and Peace has forged with us through all these years in our common effort to promote
sustainable development and human rights through people’s self-empowerment and a robust civil society.
Development and Peace has accompanied us as faithful and untiring partners through the decades as we stuggled and workedwith the farmers and indigenous peoples for their land rights, and with urban dwellers for their housing rights throughout the country. We have been together in building people’s resistance to policies and projects which violate human rights and the peace and health of communities, and put profits over people,the environment and climate. We can never forget the bonds we forged, especially during very difficult and trying times.
Without Development and Peace by our side, it would be difficult to achieve the remarkable gains scored by rural civil society organizations: an extended Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program with reforms, some 350, 000 hectares of farmland redistributed through direct action of partner organizations in constructive engagement with government, and a sustained momentum of buildingfarmer organizations pushing for completion of agrarian reform, rural development and democratization throughout the country.
Our work together among the urban poor has borne fruit in increasing number of strong community organizations and dedicated leaders. They have been enabled by education work, leadership and other organizational skills training and tactics of direct action and engagement with government to defend many communities from forcible evictions and realize viable alternatives for on-site development and/or near-city relocation.
Development and Peace has been our consistent partner as we work and struggle with urban and rural communities and the sectoral organizations of the poor, the women and the youth to build effective resistance against policies and practices that violate their human rights, deprive them of their rightful claims to clean and affordable energy and water, harm the health and peace of their families and destroy the environment and climate. We have been together in the active and peaceful quest for long-term solutions and practical alternatives.
Let us all reflect on our gains and the sacrifices and hard work through abiding partnership that made them possible. Let these experiences be our inspiration to strive further and work better for our vision, mission and goals.
Once again, we thank Development and Peace for our continued partnership as we try to accomplish our mission that Pope Benedict XVI consistently reminds us to uphold:“Testimony to Christ’s charity, through works of justice, peace and development, is part and parcel of evangelization, because Jesus Christ, who loves us, is concerned with the whole person. These important teachings form the basis for the missionary aspect of the Church’s social doctrine, which is an essential element of evangelization.” (Caritas in Veritate No. 15)
YOUR PHILIPPINE PARTNERS