Political turmoil cancels medical mission trip to Honduras

Because of political turmoil in Honduras following the arrest of President Manuel Zelaya, members of St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church in Killeen have canceled their annual medical mission trip to the Central American country.

Officials at the U.S. Embassy in Tegucigalpa, the capital of Honduras, issued a statement last week requesting that people avoid all nonessential travel to the region.

On June 28, soldiers ousted the democratically elected Zelaya before an unpopular constitution referendum went to a vote. The referendum could have allowed the president to run for a second term, which is forbidden by the Honduran constitution. Zelaya, forced into exile in Costa Rica, vowed to stay in power.

Read it all.


Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Central America, Episcopal Church (TEC), Health & Medicine, Honduras, Missions, TEC Parishes

4 comments on “Political turmoil cancels medical mission trip to Honduras

  1. William P. Sulik says:

    My edits:
    On June 28, soldiers [acting pursuant to an order of the Supreme Court] ousted the democratically elected Zelaya before an [strike the following two words:] unpopular constitution [insert “unconstitutional, but non-binding”] referendum went to a vote.

    In other words, “On June 28, soldiers acting pursuant to an order of the Supreme Court ousted the democratically elected Zelaya before an unconstitutional, but non-binding referendum went to a vote.”

    For more, see this from last weeks Christian Science Monitor:

    A contrary view is expressed today by the [url=”http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/07/08/AR2009070803606.html”]Washington Post editorial page[/url] which asserts “…the army’s arrest and deportation of President Manuel Zelaya last week violated the country’s constitution…” To date, I have not seen the case that the arrest and deportation violated the constitution and am willing to hear that out.

  2. francis says:

    William, that it violates “Democracy” is the argument OAS is making. The University is back in session today so it seems things are calmer.

  3. Jim K says:

    This situation is fascinating to me, having spent much of the 1970’s at the School of the Americas, since what we taught the military officers of much of Latin America was to understand the difference between swearing allegiance to/defending their Constitutions versus swearing allegiance to/defending their individual caudillos. The case in point for us in those days was Richard Nixon. No US officer lifted a finger to keep him in office nor would we.
    It would appear that some of the Honduran officers understood the distinction and acted on it correctly. In this present case, a budding Castro/Chavez/Mugabe/[insert your favorite tin-horn dictator] tried to subvert Honduras’ legal and constitutional processes and use an illegal plebescite to extend his term in office. Since the Honduran constitution does have a process, perfectly legal and accessible to the President, to amend the constitution and allow a President to be re-elected, Mr. Zelaya’s attempt to change the constitution by an extra-legal plebescite was clearly an effort to seize power and the officers quite properly defended their constitution (also their Congress and Supreme Court) and their citizens’ rights.
    The one surprising aspect of all this is the utter failure of our current President and Secretary of State to defend the rule of law in Honduras. They are totally on the wrong side of the facts and in favor of the attempted coup d’etat of Mr. Zelaya. Evidently, Obama must have read that book Chavez gave him about how evil the Yanquis have been all these centuries–or was is Lula of Brazil’s accusation that only blue-eyed people are responsible for all the evil in the world.
    In any case, the Honduran officers adhered to their oaths and defended their constitution “against all enemies, foreign and domestic;” just as US officers swear…and will do if our own budding little chavista tries to extend himself in office.

  4. ocamp says:

    I agree that our Administrations seems to have gotten the wrong conclusion from the facts on the ground. I was working in an orphanage in Honduras back in April, and even then the teenagers knew that Zelaya was trying to seize power by changing their constitution. They described exactly the method he would use to change the term limits. It seemed many Hondurans were aware of his dangerous move towards dictatorship, and yet, our cracker-jack AP news reporters have been yelling “military takeover!” relentlessly for the past two weeks. If a sixteen year old knew what was coming, how come our intelligence community is so confused?

    If you want more news reports from a faithful missionary in the midst of it all, you can access the website below.