“It taught me so much about the meaning of justice and healing”: Marianna Tzabiras on her time with PBI-Guatemala
As Peace Brigades International approaches its 40th anniversary in 2021, we are sharing the reflections of past volunteers from Canada who accompanied at-risk defenders in various PBI project countries over the years.
Marianna Tzabiras, who now lives in Toronto, accompanied defenders through the Peace Brigades International-Guatemala Project in 1997-98
Marianna tells us: “What an honour to have accompanied Guatemalans as they were beginning to come to terms with the country’s painful past. It taught me so much about the meaning of justice and healing.”
Marianna also shared the photo below of the PBI accompaniment of the Guatemalan Forensic Anthropology team at the exhumation of a mass grave in Chel, Quiche in January 1998. Marianna notes: “People hadn’t gone to the site or spoken about the killing since it had happened in 1982 so this was incredibly healing.”
And this next photo is from the release of the Catholic Church’s ‘Nunca Mas’ (Never Again) report that PBI attended at the cathedral in Guatemala City in April 1998. That report detailed the human rights violations during Guatemala’s 36-year civil war.
Marianna notes: “Sadly the celebration was marred by the killing just two days later of Bishop Juan Gerardi, who had been instrumental in the release of the report.”
Marianna remains active with PBI as a member of the Board of Directors of Peace Brigades International-Canada.
Please consider making an online donation to PBI-Canada to help us with our continuing outreach efforts to find volunteers to accompany defenders. Accompaniment continues to be critically needed in helping to make space for peace.