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Gabriel Peace Farm: A Centre for Peace and Reconciliation Training


On location at Gabriel Peace Farm, from left to right: Elwyn Neri (Peacebuilders field worker), Pastor Fred Fredeluces, Pastor Norman Naromal and Daniel Pantoja at Gabriel Peace Farm riverfront.

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lush valley with river flowing through it
Gabriel Peace Farm

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January 30, 2009
-Christina Barkman

DAVAO, Philippines — Forty acres of lush, mountainous and riverside land has been donated to establish Gabriel Peace Farm – home to a peace and reconciliation training centre – about an hour’s drive from Davao city.

Daniel and Joji Pantoja, international ministry workers supported by Mennonite Church Canada Witness, are working toward a lasting just-peace in Mindanao by employing grassroots peace and reconciliation training, inter-faith dialogue, and community development through Peacebuilders Community Inc., a ministry supported by Witness. The land for Gabriel Peace Farm was donated by Rosalina Reyes Zerna.

Gabriel Peace Farm will be the main training center for Peace and Reconciliation Team organizers. After training, they will be assigned to various conflict zones as field workers. Programs will also provide training and socio-cultural orientation to international volunteers serving the people of the Philippines before they are sent to their specific areas of service.

The centre will also serve as a model farm illustrating a vision for ecological-economic transformation and sustainability, an integral component of the Pantoja’s peacebuilding philosophy. Mennonite farmers from around the world will be invited to compare notes on organic agricultural technology and agri-entrepreneurship with local farmers.

Spiritual directors, peace seminars, workshops and retreat activities will be provided for field workers and peace workers from partner organizations.

Leaders will also facilitate Peace Learning Tours through Gabriel Peace Farm. The tours will invite peace-oriented organizations, churches, and other groups from around the world to see various peace projects in Southeast Asia. Plans for Gabriel Peace Farm will increase capacity for training, enabling the organization to equip more individuals to work for much-needed peace in Mindanao.