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
A road to freedom
(July 8, 2018)
In downtown Cincinnati, Ohio, there is a museum dedicated to the Underground Railroad and slavery in the United States. As soon as I began viewing the first part of the exhibit, I was overcome with emotion, seeing the portrayals of men bound in chains staring down the barrel of a gun. My eyes filled with tears.
World War I and the Church of the Brethren
(July 6, 2018)
On June 28, 1914, Archduke Ferdinand was assassinated and a month later Europe was plunged in war. As described by Steve Longenecker, Edwin L. Turner Distinguished Professor of History at Bridgewater (Va.) College, it was the first time modern industrial nations engaged in total war involving entire populations and whole industries. Tens of thousands of soldiers died in a single day of fighting. Economies crumbled. Life changed.
A BRF leader reflects on how a divided house can stand
(July 6, 2018)
Eric Brubaker, a member of the ministry team at Middle Creek Church of the Brethren, admitted his apprehension at wrestling with the ramifications of the assigned topic, “How can a divided house stand?” at an insight session sponsored by the Brethren Revival Fellowship (BRF). In keeping with the Annual Conference theme, “Living Parables,” the selected scripture was Mark 3:20-26. Key verses are 24-26, referring to a kingdom and a house divided, and Satan risen up against himself.
Bethany Seminary president takes part in ecumenical meeting with Pope Francis
(June 23, 2018)
Bethany Seminary president Jeff Carter attended World Council of Churches (WCC) biennial meetings in Geneva, Switzerland, June 15-21. He is the Church of the Brethren representative to the WCC Central Committee, a group of 150 people who represent nearly 40 percent of the WCC’s 348 member churches.
Nigeria project aims to save records of victims of Boko Haram violence
(June 7, 2018)
The Centre for Caring, Empowerment, and Peace Initiatives (CCEPI) Humanitarian Analysis project tells many stories. Dr. Rebecca S. Dali started the non-governmental organization (NGO) 29 years ago, in 1989 before Boko Haram violence began to plague northern Nigeria. She started CCEPI because she herself experienced hunger, gender-based violence, and extreme poverty growing up. Her passion for those struggling to live in northeast Nigeria led Dali to provide livelihood, trauma healing, protection monitoring, as well as basic food, clothing, and shelter, and most recently re-integration of abducted women into society.