Brazil’s National Council of Christian Churches (CONIC) expresses solidarity with young Christian Evangelical Camila Montovani who, after a series of threats, will have to leave the country. Check out the CONIC’s and Ecumenical Forum ACT Brazil’s joint solidarity note.
Solidarity to Camila Montovani and her relatives
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God” (Matthew 5:9)
Brazil’s National Council of Christian Churches (CONIC) and the Ecumenical Forum ACT Brazil (FEACT) express unreserved solidarity with Camila Montovani and her family members.
One of Camila’s deeds, as a young Evangelical, is to provide solidarity and pastoral support to Evangelical women who suffer domestic violence and cannot break its cycle because religious leaders guide them to believe “Christian women should be submissive to their husband” — as said by Ministry of Women, Family and Human Rights Damares Alves.
We remember that, in Bible stories contained in the Old Testament, many women dared to defy the oppressive system they lived in. Among them, there was Vashti, who did not submit to King Ahasuerus (Est 1.1-22).
For quite some time, Camila’s prominence has provoked the anger of fundamentalist evangelical religious leaders. Anger has now turned into hate.
Threats escalated. Her house and relatives started to be monitored, forcing Camila to wander without a fixed home. She was forced to change her routine. Lastly, the gravity of threats forced Camila to leave the country.
CONIC and FEACT stand beside Camila and her family. We also warn that other Evangelicals engaged in social movements for the promotion and defense of human rights are eperiencing similar threats.
The persecution exprienced by these persons derives from an instrumentalization of the Christian faith that legitimizes practices of violence and hate discourse. Religious fundamentalism does not accept pluralism or the critique of religion, even when it causes oppression or violence.
The Christian faith cannot be manipulated either to subjugate, or to dominate territories, imposing fear on people. The Christian faith cannot be associated with weapons and organized crime.
Evangelical faith is not violence. It is not based on exclusivism or authoritarianism. It is guided by the loving grace of God and by freedom. This is the testimony of the many Evangelical traditions in the country. We will not accept our faith tradition be used in the promotion of hatred, racism, sexism and other forms of domination and violence.
May the peace of Jesus Christ, his radical testimony of life, contrary to all state and religious oppressive power, guide and strengthen us.
National Council of Christian Churches of Brazil (Conselho Nacional de Igrejas Cristãs do Brasil)
Ecumenical Forum ACT BRASIL (Forum Ecumênico ACT BRASIL)