Office of Peacebuilding and Policy
“A Witness of the Church of the Brethren”
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 and Peace celebrates 70 years of active peace work in Europe
(June 1, 2019)
About 150 people from peace churches, peace organizations, communities, friends, and guests--from 10 denominations and Christian traditions and 14 countries--met to mark the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the European ecumenical network Church and Peace. They gathered on May 18 for a ceremony in the Reformation Church of Moabit in Berlin to celebrate the network’s past, present, and future with the theme, “‘I will give you future and hope’ (Jeremiah 29:11): 70 years of living nonviolence and resisting militarization.”
Faith leaders gather in Flint for environmental justice tour, plan for ecumenical water justice action
(June 1, 2019)
From May 13-14 in Flint, Mich., 23 board members of Creation Justice Ministries, an ecumenical eco-justice organization, gathered to pray, learn, and act for water justice. The Church of the Brethren Office of Peacebuilding and Policy is an active member, and membership affords opportunities to network with other Christian communions, denominations, and fellowships with active commitments to protect, restore, and more rightly share God’s creation.
Christian Citizenship Seminar seeks creative solutions to violent conflict
(May 17, 2019)
The Christian Citizenship Seminar gathered 47 high school youth and advisors from Church of the Brethren congregations throughout the US, beginning on April 27 in New York City and ending in Washington, D.C., on May 2, focused on the theme “Creative Solutions to Violent Conflict Worldwide.” The event was led by five Church of the Brethren staff from the Youth and Young Adult Ministry and the Office of Peacebuilding and Policy.
Church of the Brethren renews memorandum of understanding with Selective Service
(May 6, 2019)
The Church of the Brethren has renewed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Selective Service System, the federal department responsible for the nation’s preparation for a military draft and draft registration. Selective Service also has worked with the historic peace churches to plan for alternative service for conscientious objectors in the event of a draft.
Gathering will dedicate memorial stones for conscientious objectors
(May 4, 2019)
An ecumenical gathering on Wednesday, May 15, will hold a ceremony related to the 2019 International Conscientious Objection Day, and all are invited. A special focus of this gathering will be to dedicate engraved stones remembering those who, in the spirit of two cherished Bible passages (Isaiah 2:4 and Luke 19:42), were conscientious objectors during World War I.