Monday, January 15, 2007

AVP = period ended 6.1.2006

AVP/Forgiveness///Frost: earning from Friends for peace/Lincoln Journal/Lincoln/MA/USA/31-May-06/... AVP is used in a few U.S. prisons by volunteers who want to offer offenders a way to cope with the anger in their devastated lives. MCI Concord has run many AVP programs through Concord Prison Outreach, a group made up primarily of members of local churches, including two in Lincoln.
So I assumed I was going to hear an African Quaker talk about AVP in African prisons.
It was much bigger than that.
At first glance, David Bucura could have been any African-American - perhaps warmer and more ready to smile than many Americans meeting a group of strangers, but otherwise like one of us. But his strong accent would have given him away. (At times it was difficult to understand him; the official European language in his country is French.)
His persona certainly did not evoke any of the tragic history of the Rwandan genocide of 1994, or the tense relations between the Hutu and Tutsi tribes that still casts its long shadow.
Bucura began his talk, in simple words that sounded at times almost poetic, by saying that during the genocide, most officials left for America or Europe, "and the people died." He and his co-workers wanted to teach people how to live together.
They said, "We have to do something for our country." And they shared - things and experiences. It was a good time to share and hear, because everybody had lost [family, homes, friends]. They also said, "As Quakers, we must forgive. For some, that was hard. Some could not accept..." ...


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