Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Peace Forum, Running & Biking for Peace in Lanao

Yesterday, I attended a Peace Forum which was held at the Crystal Inn in Iligan City. This forum was one of the activities of the "Campaign for Understanding & Peace" sponsored by the Civil Society Organizations-Ranaw in partnership with the Mindanao People's Caucus with he support of the GoP-UNDP Act for Peace Programme. The objectives of the campaign are the following:

-To raise the level of people's awareness on the impact of the conflict based on the perspective of the affected communines and its great cost in terms of psycho-social, economic and physical damage

- To inform people of the continuing efforts to strengthen Muslim-Christian relations despite the challenges

- To encourage community leaders and members to participate in the efforts to promote peace and in resolving conflict.

Besides the Peace Forum in Iligan yesterday, there were other activities this morning:

6:00 - 7:00 am Run & Bike for Peace within Iligan City (with Fr. Robert Reyes the running priest and me -the cycling priest) - from MSU-IIT to Pryce Plaza. I biked beside Fr. Reyes and some runners.

7:00 am - 11 am - Bike & Caravan for Peace from Iligan to Kolambugan (I was accompanied by 25 Iligan bikers and followed by a peace caravan). We stopped over at the Lapayan- a place attacked by MILF- and amidst the ruins we prayed for the victims.

Two kilometers before Kolambugan, we slowed down and followed Fr. Reyes, the Mayor of Kolambugan (Bertrand Lumaque) and those in the Peace Caravan who started walking to the poblacion.

A Peace Forum was conducted at the Gym from 1:30- 4:30 in the afternoon, attended by the residents of this town that was recently attacked by the MILF.

No comments: