Office of Peacebuilding and Policy
“A Witness of the Church of the Brethren”
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The Church of the Brethren Office of Peacebuilding and Policy works in Washington, DC to advocate for Brethren values like peace and simplicity in the context of U.S. policy.
In Romans 12, we see the call to be personally transformed and bear witness to the peace we have received. The Office of Peacebuilding and Policy seeks to live the peace of Jesus publicly by educating on issues and peace theology, organizing Church of the Brethren members and congregations to take action, and advocating in Washington, DC around issues of concern for the denomination.
Our denomination’s 1989 annual conference statement on Church and State says that “Christians and the church are called at times to speak a prophetic word to the state. When the state is doing things that negate and deny God’s will as revealed in Jesus Christ and the Bible, Christians must speak out, doing so in love and respect for those engaged in wrongdoing and those being wronged (Eph. 4:15). When the state is doing things which move in the general direction of God’s will and way (human well-being, justice and peace), Christians can give support and commendation.”
We take the Biblical call to use our voices to speak out for justice seriously. We amplify the voices of Nigerians impacted by Boko Haram violence, call for an end to drone warfare, raise awareness of the importance of creation care, and advocate on a variety of other peace-related issues.
Our office also coordinates with a wide variety of faith-based organizations that work on peace issues, in line with the 2018 annual conference statement on ecumenism. These organizations include:
- Center on Conscience and War
- National Religious Campaign Against Torture
- Creation Justice Ministries
- Interfaith Network on Drone Warfare
- Churches for Middle East Peace
- Christian Peacemaker Teams
Church of the Brethren signs letter to presidential candidates on military budget
(December 12, 2019)
The Church of the Brethren is one of 32 faith groups that signed a letter to the 2020 presidential candidates calling for a reduction in military spending and redirection of those funds to address needs such as poverty, hunger, education, healthcare, and the environment, among others. An additional 72 individual faith leaders also have signed the letter.
A witness to ancient stones and living stones of faith
(December 12, 2019)
A few weeks ago, I traveled with the executive director of Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP), Mae Elise Cannon, and Erik Apelgårdh of the World Council of Churches (WCC), to Iraqi Kurdistan. The intent was to expand CMEP’s work in the region, with a particular focus on the sustainability of the historic Christian communities and access to humanitarian assistance.
Christian Association of Nigeria commemorates date of displacement
(November 18, 2019)
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) commemorated Oct. 29, the day Boko Haram overran Mubi and Hong communities of Adamawa State in 2014. The entire community had fled to different areas within and outside the country of Nigeria. All church denominations in the area that are under the CAN umbrella gathered at the Mararaba Local Church Council of Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN) for prayer, worship, speeches, and testimonies.
Elizabethtown College Peace Fellowship Lecture: Timely relevance and challenge of the Anabaptist tradition
(November 18, 2019)
Elizabethtown (Pa.) Church of the Brethren was filled with congregants representing diverse Brethren churches and Anabaptist traditions for the Elizabethtown College Peace Fellowship lecture. Drew Hart, assistant professor of theology at Messiah College, introduced “not a light topic” of how white supremacy and Christianity are entangled together. Using the metaphor of “putting on our blue jeans,” Hart encouraged listeners to find and follow the message of Jesus over attachments to power and cultural affiliations.
Brethren Service Europe office to be closed at the end of 2019
(November 15, 2019)
The Brethren Service Europe office of the Church of the Brethren will be closed at the end of 2019. It is hosted at the World Council of Churches’ Ecumenical Center in Geneva, Switzerland, the city where it has been located since 1947. Currently the work of the office centers on placement and supervision of Brethren Volunteer Service workers in Europe. The Brethren Service Europe office of the Church of the Brethren will be closed at the end of 2019. It is hosted at the World Council of Churches’ Ecumenical Center in Geneva, Switzerland, the city where it has been located since 1947. Currently the work of the office centers on placement and supervision of Brethren Volunteer Service workers in Europe.