The Aspirations of Andean Quakers

Yes, there are Quakers in the Andes—lots of them. And, yes, they have aspirations. Working with them, as a Quaker myself, has been an intense and rewarding experience. The reward comes partly because they are very poor (annual family incomes are often below $1,000, almost always below $5,000) and have survived centuries of oppression and exploitation, which makes them quite different from Friends I know in the United States and United Kingdom. And it comes partly because their lives highlight for me one difference between aspiration and ambition. My experience with ambitious people is that they are🔒

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Newton Garver, a member of Buffalo (N.Y.) Meeting, has traveled to Bolivia seven times: in 1999 with the Quaker Study Tour, in 2000 as a new board member of Quaker Bolivia Link, the next two years as a co-leader (with Barbara Flynn) of the Quaker Study Tour, and the last three visits on behalf of the Bolivian Quaker Education Fund. His book Limits to Power: Some Friendly Reminders (Center Working Papers, 2006) contains five of his reports on political developments in Bolivia since 2003, and subsequent ones can be found at http://buffaloreport.com/2006/061104.garver.progress.html.

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