Invitation to Join an Emergency Faith Delegation to Honduras

January 24-30, 2018

“Your people shall be my people” (Ruth 1:16)

We are writing to you on behalf of Father Melo (Rev. Ismael Moreno, SJ), friend of Pax Christi USA, the Jesuit who has accompanied the Honduran people for more than 20 years. He is appealing to the international community for immediate help:­ “We need you to organize delegations that will come to accompany us, to witness what is happening here and to share it with the world.”

This delegation of ecumenical faith leaders will do exactly that.

Background:  Honduras is in an extreme crisis following a grievously flawed presidential election on November 26th.  Social movements have been pouring into the streets for weeks protesting electoral fraud, and have been repressed by Honduran security forces.  Over 30 people have been killed and hundreds wounded and detained. The government imposed martial law and, days before Christmas, prematurely called the election in favor of the current president.  The US government, which has given the Honduran military and police over $100 million since the 2009 coup d’etat, quickly ratified that call by recognizing the incumbent as the winner, despite calls for new elections from the OAS and others who warned that the election did not meet international standards.

The Jesuit station, Radio Progreso, one of the last independent media in the country, was sabotaged in mid-December, its transmission tower destroyed.  Over this past New Year’s weekend, new death threats were issued against Father Melo and other social justice activists.  See NCR and America articles.

Delegation Objectives:

To accompany the Honduran human rights defenders and social movements as they mobilize and demand respect for the true results of the November presidential elections; and to lend support to the faith communities accompanying those who are most vulnerable.  This includes accompanying them to the capital of Tegucigalpa for the national demonstration at the inauguration, set for January 27th;

To collect testimonies and witness the repression against those involved in the peaceful demonstrations; and

To return to the U.S. to share their findings, carry forth the “cry of the people” of Honduras for justice, and advocate for a just resolution to the crisis.

Dates: January 24-30, 2018.  We will be flying into San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

Cost: Airfare approximately $500 – $600; plus approx. $400 in country for room and board.

Please contact: Jose Artiga at 415.558.8634jose@share-elsalvador.org; Rev. Deborah Lee at 415.297.8222, dlee@im4humanintegrity.org; Jean Stokan at jstokan@sistersofmercy.org; or Jenny Atlee at jennya@friendshipamericas.org.

Hoping for the light of a new day for our sisters and brothers in Honduras,

Jose Artiga, Executive Director, SHARE Foundation.

Jenny Atlee, Friendship Office/Honduras Accompaniment Project

Rev. Deborah Lee, Executive Director, Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity

Jean Stokan, Sisters of Mercy of the Americas’ Justice Team