Wednesday, May 9, 2012

U.S. Catholic priest honored for lifetime of solidarity

Fr. Peter Hinde, O.Carm, co-founder with Sr. Betty Campbell, RSM, of Tabor House in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, and a co-founder of CRISPAZ, Cristianos/as por la Paz en El Salvador, will receive an honorary Degree of Doctor of Divinity from Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis, IN on May 12, 2012. The award was announced on Interconnect, the Latin American Solidarity Committee's quarterly newsletter.
Quoting Marty Schladen of the El Paso Times:
Hinde, known now as Father Peter, has gone from World War II fighter pilot to a member of Veterans for Peace who comes to El Paso every Friday to protest U.S. military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan. He lives among and ministers to some of Juarez's poorest residents. And he argues that U.S. policies help keep them poor.
After experiencing the civil-rights movement while living in Washington, D.C., and the beginnings of the movement known as liberation theology while living in Peru, Hinde plans to end his days in Juarez trying to demonstrate what he sees as the effects of trade policy on Mexican workers.
(l-r) Fr. Peter Hinde, Pat Delgado and
Sister Betty Campbell address a group of university
students visiting the U.S.-Mexico border.

Cathy Cornell, President of the Board of CRISPAZ commented:
"Peter's accompaniment of the people of the Americas - his walking and working with people in the South and then sharing their stories with people in the North in a form of reverse mission - embodies the mission of CRISPAZ. He provides us with an example of how to be a responsible citizen of the US."
Father Peter and Sister Betty are the two people most responsible for my own annual pilgrimages to the U.S.-Mexico border. Throughout the bloodiest years of the Juarez drug war, they have never wavered in their commitment to live solidarity with the common people of the city. As friends of theirs, I received an insight into the reality of terror that the people of Juarez have lived, as they shared the real-life stories from the barrio.

Father Peter is a really smart man who has not neglected rigorous systemic analysis even though he cast his lot with the poor. He fully deserves a doctorate. Even more, his life--as well as the life of Sister Betty who has been his team player and partner in ministry--deserve greater recognition and fame, although neither of them would seek acknowledgement in a self-seeking motivation--quite the opposite! But lives like theirs rightfully inspire the masses, causing us to reflect, take stock, and--perhaps--to change.


Vicente Duque said...

Beautiful Life, Great Values, Great Strength ! -- Thanks to this Man.


Congratulations to all Women on Mother's day.


Billie Greenwood said...

Thanks for your good wishes, Vicente. Although I don't know you personally, I surely have the impression that you are also a man whose commitment to an inclusive world is unwavering. Thank you for the wonderful example you set!