Province Joins National Campaign Against Torture

Russell Testa Features

With the Senate and House of Representatives passing recent legislation that attempts to deal with the prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, the question of torture has come back. To this end, upon the recommendation of the JPIC Directorate as a way to help animate the Franciscan Peacemaking proposal from Chapter 2005, the Provincial Council approved Holy Name Province’s official joining of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NCRAT).

NRCAT was formed after the revelations of torture at Abu Ghraib, Iraq, came to light. The organization describes itself as follows:

“The National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT) joins people of faith committed to ensuring that the United States does not engage in torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment of anyone, without exceptions. NRCAT is a campaign of national, regional, and local religious and secular organizations. We are national denominations and faith groups, local interfaith groups and congregations, and more.”

For us in the Franciscan tradition, it is natural for us to join an organization like this. Part of our peacemaking role is to repair broken social relationships by bringing the light of Christ to them. By ensuring that people are not tortured, we help the relationships to be less broken, less harmed. We are safeguarding a better opportunity for peace.

To learn more about NRCAT or to get involved in the group’s activities, please visit its Web site or contact Russ Testa at 202-541-5245 or