In Mission with El Salvador / “En Misión con El Salvador”
Since 2013 The Rev. Dr. Brian Rude has served as a deployed staff member of the Synod of Alberta and the Territories in El Salvador through In Mission with El Salvador / “En Misión con El Salvador”. Pastor Brian’s ministry began in 1988 and is one of accompaniment with the church and people of El Salvador.
May 3, 2021 Correspondence from Bishop Larry and Pastor Brian announcing Pastor Brian’s upcoming retirement. Read the letter here.
¡Gracias! – March 20, 2021
Pastor Brian gives a post-election update. Read his update here.
Election Results in El Salvador – March 5, 2021
Pastor Brian recently acted as a neutral observer with other international witnesses to encourage a fair election process in El Salvador. Read about his experience here. Read a report of the election results here.
1/2 & 1/2 – December 26, 2020
Today is another significant date in my life. Today marks a half-way point in my life. Read more.
CHICHONTEPEC – October 3, 2020
An historic ballad of death and life, tragedy and hope
Read Rev. Dr. Brian Rude’s poem and see his photos Chichontepec
COVID-19 Ministry – July 2020
Four weeks ago, our mini-Fe y Esperanza cohort enjoyed a post-quarantine Saturday distributing a few dozen more food hampers. This was our third such endeavour. This time around, instead of folk coming to us in central locations, we went searching for them. Sometimes it took up to three scouting attempts, in remote rural settings. Complicating the search was the fact that the only names we had for some were their war-time (’80s) pseudonyms. Folk who were presumably their neighbours now had no clue who we were talking about, or looking for. We kept asking, persistently, and eventually successfully. Oblivious to clandestine boundaries and possible no-go zones, we accomplished our mission without setbacks. We explored some lovely countryside and met up with some delightful folk, so gracious and welcoming. One senior woman even treated me–unknowingly–to my favourite cheezies, which have been out of stock in San Salvador since the quarantine began in early March (not much of a junk-food person, I did indulge in these during canteen break at summer camp as a kid–so, nostalgia food). Our deliveries were mostly in the general area of Suchitoto, a lakeside colonial tourist-town-turned-ghost-town.
Even after three decades of immersion in every corner of this small but diverse country, one can be alarmed–and disturbed–at the dire living conditions of some of our sisters and brothers.
As usual, we returned home much enriched, having received much more than we had to offer.
Thanks be to God.
Easter Victory – April 23, 2020
I wrapped up my personal Easter vigil early this morning wondering if I would have a Salvadoran Easter message to send out . . . , By Easter morning, thoughts of a Salvadoran message had morphed into a global message. Read the complete message here: Easter Victory – Rev. Dr. Brian Rude – April 23, 2020
Easter New Life – April 12, 2020
I haven’t set up an altar at home.
My home surrounds me with altars–Easter altars.
Anyone who is half a gardener would have a hard time denying the resurrection. New life abounds. New life springs up, quietly, unannounced, waiting to be found, waiting to be celebrated, waiting to renew our faith, waiting to teach us lessons of life, new life–and rainy season hasn’t even started yet!
To read the full letter, click here: Easter New Life – Rev. Dr. Brian Rude – April 12, 2020
Yearly Ministry Reports:
December 4, Advent Eschatology
Advent has arrived.
The word for the season, it seems, is “escatología”.
In mid-November, in the midst of the 30th annual commemoration of the Jesuit priests’ martyrdom here at the UCA in San Salvador, today’s Jesuits were reflecting on the theme chosen for this year: “El Sentido Escatalógico de la Iglesia”–“The Eschatological Sense of the Church”. They drew on San Romero’s reflections on escatología: on the Exodus, leading to liberation; on the Bablyonian exile, leading to the homecoming of God’s people to the promised land of Israel; and on contemporary times, God’s people still longing for, struggling toward, and sometimes celebrating, liberation.
To read the full article click here: Dec 4 2019 Rev. Dr. Brian Rude’s Letter
October 19, 2019 Building our future
“Greta has come to Montreal and Edmonton.
Greta has spoken in Montreal and Edmonton.
“Make the Americas Greta Always–MAGA,” I say (hey, why not the entire planet?).
Elections are coming to Montreal and Edmonton–well, to all of Canada, including to us globally-scattered ex-pats–once again, PM Trudeau says.
Heady days, no? Are we being asked to put our mark on the course of history? Even re-direct history, perhaps? Uff da.
Some wonder whether we should just stick to being concerned about the homeless, making sure they have shelter, food and clothing. As with the poor, oil and gas will always be with us, they say. Such essential energy sources probably won’t have any impact on us, our future, or our planet, they optimistically insist, not taking seriously what Greta has learned from science….”
To read more see the link below:
July 12, 2019
“Ministry–openness to ministry–can take one in some unexpected directions, without one even trying or searching. For several years now, I have been lamenting the closing of prison gates to ministry with prison inmates throughout the prison system of El Salvador, due especially to increasingly punitive and repressive government policies (if you can imagine). I am able to link with some inmate friends outside prison walls, through varying cultural and sports and artisan events, or with some who are at some level of parole, and thus free to leave their prison spaces briefly. Some of these have been friends for decades within the prison system, collaborating with our programs and engaging in regular conversation.” To read more click on the evolving ministry link:
June 16, 2019
Easter Victory, 2019
Good Friday Crosses (Good Friday 2019)
In my San Salvador neighbourhood, we commemorate annually the martyrdom of the Roman Catholic parish priest and four of the youth members, assassinated while celebrating a weekend retreat during the war of the 80s. Three years ago, another youth was assassinated during the Good Friday evening “Santo Entierro”–Holy Burial–procession. So we commemorate not only Jesus’s divine crucifixion, but also these human crucifixions since then, so many too recently.
Two well-known Salvadoran Jesuit liberation theologians–Ellacuría, one of the Jesuit priests martyred on 16 Nov., 1989, and Sobrino, who survived that massacre because he was in Thailand at the time–write and speak passionately about our Jesus-following mission being to take God’s crucified people down from their crosses. That is a never-ending mission–certainly in El Salvador, but also globally.
It is becoming a more urgent ministry in so many places in recent years–the U.S.A., Brazil, the Canadian provinces of Ontario and Alberta–as care-less governments prioritize the economy, mostly for the benefit of the wealthy–“growth,” “development,” “GDP”–over God’s creation, which is crucified mercilessly and endlessly: human beings (especially the vulnerable); flora and fauna; air, water, soil.
So many crosses.
So many Good Fridays.