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On Sunday mornings in congregations across the country, hands are shaken, and the words of Christ’s peace are exchanged with one another. Yet what does it mean to pass the peace of Christ into a world that is often anxious?
They are advocates. They are interpreters. They are bridge builders. They are peacemakers.
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) mission workers are men and women who have discerned a call from God to serve four or more years alongside our global partners. They dedicate years of their lives to help us understand issues of ministry across boundaries, interpreting language and culture, and sharing God’s love.
In just five months, Presbyterian churches across the U.S. will be hosting the 2018 International Peacemakers. This year, 10 peacemakers are expected to take part in the annual event, sponsored by the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program.
We celebrate the World Day of Prayer for Latin American Women on the second Friday in September. One of the motivations to celebrate this day has been the various forms of violence against women, which are increasingly deepened through their different typified manifestations, and even when some have not yet been typified, they are still provoking psychological, emotional and physical damage without dismissing their death of our women.
The 2016 International Peacemakers are finishing up their visits to U.S. churches, colleges and communities. Seven of the speakers gathered this week at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary to debrief with staff. During its day-long gathering, the group shared their experiences, hopes and recommendations for future meetings.
While the US and Cuban governments have only recently reestablished diplomatic ties, the Presbyterian Church has continually maintained a relationship between the two countries. Congregations will get an idea how that has progressed this month when the 2016 class of International Peacemakers visits the United States.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. (Matthew 5:9)
Everyone can do something for peace.
What can one person do to advance world peace? Elizabeth Meehan, an elder at Presbyterian-New England Congregational Church of Saratoga Springs, New York, learned. Eight years ago, Meehan wanted to get involved in peacemaking, a cause that touches the environment, equitable access to resources, hunger, and many other topics. Meehan gained the support of her church’s Social Concerns Committee, and the Peace Fair was born.
Along the way Kathy nurtured partnerships and continued to build connections with others, leading her to participate, plan, worked behind the scenes at the Peacemaking Conferences. The Peacemaking conference has nurtured three generations of the Runyeon family as they educated themselves and those around about injustice, violence and what people can do to work for peace at home and abroad.