Guatemala hosts an interfaith celebration full of color and joy

LAC

DPAC - World Day of Prayer and Action for Children- was commemorated at an artistic and cultural event hosted by GNRC Guatemala, with hundreds attending at a busy square in the downtown district of the capital.

The Global Network of Religions for Children (GNRC) Guatemala celebrated the World Day of Prayer and Action for Children (DPAC) at Constitucion Square in front of the Metropolitan Cathedral. The event was dedicated to “Building a Culture of Peace in the Family” explained GNRC Guatemala representatives at a press conference.

The festivities included participation of the “Peronia Joven” Group, “Puente Arbol” Christian Group, and the “Esperanza” Youth Association, who entertained and delighted the over 400 attendees with acts on stilts, juggling, balloons, rhythm and music, encouraging all to work in unity for the wellbeing of children. The activity culminated with an Interfaith Prayer with participation of the Baha’i Community, Ecumenical Council, Casa Tibet, Saint John Apostle Church, and the Christian Youth Association, who called on the State of Guatemala to respect the rights of children and youth and assign resources for this sector of the population.

Aside from the celebration at Constitucion Square, there will also be commemorative marches with children and youth in Jutiapa and Solola, as well as ethics education workshops from November 20 to December 6, 2011.

The celebration of the DPAC in Guatemala has taken place at a time when violence has cut short the lives of over 1,771 children from 2008 to 2011, according to the Human Rights Office, adding that family violence and sexual aggression affects a greater number of girls than boys.

“We need to create spaces in our churches,” said GNRC Guatemala Coordinator Misael Mendez of the Ecumenical Council, “...to raise awareness about the importance of the family and preventing violence… because it is in the family that the children are taught violence.”

Original report by Mayra Rodríguez