Resources to Assist Congregations with Their Commitment to Peacemaking
Once congregations have made the Commitment to Peacemaking, they may seek guidance for what issues/emphases to undertake for their peacemaking witness. The process of peacemaking is not easy. Congregations may seek guidance as they discern the proper way to live out their commitment. The resources below provide congregations with direction as they navigate this process.
Companion Guide to the Commitment to Peacemaking
The Companion Guide to the Commitment to Peacemaking has been developed not to replace the Commitment to Peacemaking, but to accompany it as a resource and a tool, assisting congregations, mid councils and theological institutions as they make, reaffirm and deepen their commitment to peacemaking. The Guide outlines a unique process of worship, spiritual grounding and reflection, community building and partnership, study and preparation, and direct action and advocacy, Presbyterians are invited to engage in an intentional “development” of their peacemaking work and witness. It provides a set of original and curated resources, designed to help Presbyterians engage a peacemaking area of emphasis of their choosing:
- Climate Change
A Suggested Process for Congregations Seeking to Determine Their Justice/Peacemaking Call –This document helps congregations
- identify previous peacemaking efforts and commitments
- determine the major social justice issues/peacemaking areas of emphasis that their members are most passionate about
- set measurable goals
- organize their work
Guidelines for Communal Discernment — When Christians gather to make important decision, we are to seek the mind of Christ. A group can better discern the Spirit’s leading when it engages intentionally in a process that nurtures community, is rooted in prayer and reflection on Scripture, deepens listening, weighs options, and seeks consensus. These guidelines describe steps and tools for such a process for groups as small as a committee and as large as an assembly.
Maps for the Journey of Faith and Peacemaking – This one-session adult Bible study invites participants to examine their lives as journeys as peacemakers following Jesus. Participants are encouraged to make a map reflecting their peacemaking journeys and where those journeys are leading them.
Guidance for Congregations as They Engage in Peacemaking
Resourcing Yourself for the Peacemaking Journey – This document provides helpful tips to keep a congregation centered in its peacemaking efforts, such as grounding the work in scripture, learning to interact with people of differing points of view, and recognizing that change can be painful for some.– this document provides helpful tips to keep a congregation centered in their peacemaking efforts, such as grounding the work in scripture, learning to interact with people with differing points of view, and recognizing that the process of changing the established powers and ways of thinking is painful for some.
Seeking to be Faithful Together: Guidelines for Presbyterians During Times of Disagreement — The 204th General Assembly (1992) adopted these Guidelines for its own life and provided them as a tool to congregations and other bodies of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) to use in times of conflict and disagreement. The Guidelines offer clear, simple suggestions for dealing with differences, transforming them into opportunities for growth, grace and understanding. Though the use of these Guidelines cannot prevent conflict from happening, they will engender an open, helpful, constructive climate where differences can be spoken in love and heard with understanding.