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Peace Discernment Interim Report – Encountering the Gospel of Peace Anew: An Invitation to Discernment and Witness (2012)

This brief document invites members, congregations, and all councils and organizations of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) to prepare to participate in a process of discernment, to “encounter the Gospel of Peace anew.” This is the outline of the process requested by the last General Assembly. And while we are now preparing a guide and resource packet for discernment, our hope is not simply to help the church “count the costs” of grievous wars and violence in our culture, but to “meet the Prince of Peace again, as if for the first time.” ?One of the overtures shaping the 219th General Assembly (2010)’s action clearly sought to encourage our church to become a “peace church,” not simply opposing particular wars but affirming nonviolence as a basic orientation toward conflict-abroad, at home, and in our everyday lives. The Assembly was not asked to take that position in 2010, but rather to put that basic question of war and violence before the whole church in relation to a wide range of Christian responses to our changing context in our nation and our world.”