Congolese, former child soldiers (from Exile’s program in Goma, DR Congo) wrote letters to their peers in northern Uganda – child survivors of the LRA. The following transcribes one teen’s powerful message of encouragement, hope and blessing.
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Dear brothers and sisters in Uganda,
We great you in Jesus name, Shalom.
We are boys and girls in Peace Lives in Goma, DR Congo. We have heard about you through Didi, Joseph, Bethany and Matthieu. We have heard you lived the same hard life like we did, but God is almighty – He bought us [to] Peace Lives Center and you are [receiving] care like us, praise the Lord.
We have been child soldiers for years (others for months). We could not have hope but God’s children brought us in new life where we can go to school, read bible, teach other young about Jesus and life. We understand that without Jesus [there is] no life.
We were soldiers of men. Now we are soldiers of Christ. We encourage you to join us in this ideology so that we may change together the Africa.
As young peace makers we are doing our best to contribute to the transformation of the world for Jesus.
Brothers, know that we love you and are praying for you everyday. Bethany, Matthéw, Didi & Joseph have been our blessings, so we need to be blessings to all of you.
Even though we have never met face-to-face, we hope to work together hand-in-hand and to see you one day.
We love you.
In the name of the boys & girls of PLC,
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*Author’s name changed for her safety. *Adele is a Young Peace Maker & former child soldier living in DR Congo. She recently graduated secondary school and hopes to attend university in 2014. As a graduate and leader from PLC’s Young Peace Maker program, she now volunteers her time serving other war-affected children — influencing Congo’s next generation of peace leaders. We believe, with Adele, that each of these youth represent potential for a more peaceful tomorrow. They are and will positively influence their own communities.
Given time and God’s power –
Africa’s next generation will be soldiers of peace rather than soldiers of war.