Christian BoyLove Forum #66200

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do you know your own history?? Ammo for sanity!

Posted by critical thinker on 2014-03-10 17:09:25, Monday

The following is a set of historical quotes (mostly from the 1980s) from a site that is oriented to exposing authoritarianism where-ever it rears its ugly head (well, in most places). For Christians, and especially those who would become (or have been) missionaries, I thought the following would be good for you to know of, and perhaps assist you in realizing that there is a somewhat rich history of your kind standing up in defense of warred-on groups.

Such knowledge may help you in bringing a serious voice to your approaches on your views. If nothing else, it's informative, and can possibly re-invigorate you all as you think about ways to approach congregations and others in your communities, re: on the subjects of Latin America and other nations where missionaries exist in the world:

excerpted from the book
Cry of the People:
The struggle for human rights in Latin America
and the Catholic Church in conflict with US policy

by Penny Lernoux
Penguin Books, 1980

Page 285:
"...the missionary was forced to face the conflict posed by his dual role as American citizen and bearer of Christ's universal Good News. Indigenous Christians were suffering imprisonment, torture, and death, as well as hunger and social discrimination, at the hands of repressive governments; and yet these governments were receiving U.S. economic and military aid, and in some instances had been brought to power by the United States. For the missionaries working and living with these people, this was not a remote issue of foreign relations but a question of neighbors and friends.

As one Protestant writer put it, "Most missionaries loved the countries and the people where they worked far too much to knowingly damage them.'' Thus, when these missionaries realized that they had been used as tools by their own government to harm the interests of the people they had thought to serve, they were shocked and angry.

"The crux of the matter was the blatant violation of freedom of worship, one of the fundamental guarantees in the United States Constitution, by an agency funded by American taxpayers, and all on behalf of right-wing political interests. According to U. S. Senate investigations, the CIA attempted to play God in Latin America, deciding who should be President, who should be eliminated, how the people should live, and whom they should have as allies and enemies. Foreign missionaries and local religious groups were among the many means used to achieve these ends, but because of what they believed and taught, their [foreign missionaries] manipulation must be viewed as an act of calculated cynicism.

"CIA Director William Colby's assertion that CIA use of clergy and churches was "no reflection upon their integrity or mission" was absurd:

"...At the same time it [the CIA] contributed to the persecution and division of Latin America's Catholic Church by supporting right-wing Catholic groups and financed and trained police agencies responsible for the imprisonment, torture, and murder of priests, nuns, and bishops, some of them U.S. citizens. That is why missionary groups in the United States have changed from complacent collaborators to harsh critics of the CIA-they have seen the results of the agency's intervention with their own eyes.

"After President Ford announced his approval of illegal U.S. intervention in the internal affairs of the Latin-American countries, sixteen officials of Catholic and Protestant mission agencies wrote him:

"Contrary to what you would have us believe, CIA covert actions in the Third World frequently support undemocratic governments that trample on the rights of their own people. We missionaries have felt first-hand the effects of such interventions, which are certainly not in 'the best interests' of the majority of the citizens of those countries.... Nor do such actions, which are prohibited by international law and by Article 6 of our own Constitution, serve 'our best interests,' as you stated.
Gangster methods undermine world order and promote widespread hatred of the United States."

"Warned New World Outlook, published by agencies of the United Methodist and United Presbyterian churches: "one cannot "defend democracy by destroying it."

"As long as U.S. citizens shrug their shoulders, romanticize "spy thrillers," and pass the buck to politicians, it added, there will be blood on our hands, "for it is our money and our government that pay for the regimes that do the killing.""



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