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
- Office of Peacebuilding and Policy signs letter to Senate Armed Services Committee regarding Selective Service
The Church of the Brethren Office of Peacebuilding and Policy has signed a letter sent by peace church organizations and other peace groups to the Senate Armed Services Committee. The letter urges an end to the Selective Service System and rejection of any attempt to add women to the group on which the burden of draft registration is imposed. The letter supports a piece of bipartisan legislation, S 1139, that would repeal the Military Selective Service Act.
- The time to act is now: Rights of conscientious objectors and the Selective Service System
If you are concerned about the rights of conscientious objectors and the Selective Service System (aka “the draft”), the time to act is now.
- Churches for Middle East Peace Condemns Violence in Jerusalem
Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP) has issued a statement condemning the violence in Jerusalem and calling for the Biden administration to intervene immediately.
- BBT issues annual lists of companies screened from investments for Dept. of Defense contracts
As an agency of a historic peace church that believes in nonviolence, Brethren Benefit Trust has long screened out investing the funds of Brethren Pension Plan members and its money management clients in weapons and weapons systems, firearms, and US Department of Defense contracts.
- Selective Service Repeal Act receives endorsement
The Church of the Brethren Office of Peacebuilding and Policy has endorsed the Selective Service Repeal Act on the recommendation of longterm partner organization the Center on Conscience and War (CCW). The bill offers an alternative during a time when others are urging Congress to expand draft registration to women as part of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2022.
- ‘If we want to find God, we need to be with the victims of this oppression and prejudice’
For the past year, Minnesota has been in the national news following the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. The prosecution and defense attorneys wrapped up their case in the trial of Officer Chauvin this week, and on Monday will present their closing arguments. Then the state, city, and nation await the verdict of the jury.
- Online conversation will listen and learn from Brethren leaders of Asian-American heritage
An upcoming virtual conversation titled “Listening and Learning from Brethren Leaders of Asian-American Heritage” is sponsored by the Church of the Brethren Office of Ministry. The event held through Zoom on May 5 at 7:30 p.m. (Eastern time) will focus on the current concern for the safety, needs, and valuing of Asian-American and Pacific Islander members of American society in light of recent instances of violence directed toward them.
- Church of the Brethren staff plan expansion of agriculture and trauma recovery programing in South Sudan
A plan to expand Church of the Brethren agriculture and trauma recovery programing in South Sudan is receiving support from Brethren Disaster Ministries and the Global Food Initiative. A joint allocation directs $29,500 to the work in South Sudan, including $24,500 from the Emergency Disaster Fund (EDF) and $5,000 from the Global Food Initiative (GFI).
- Discipleship Ministries offers opportunity to share prayers
The Church of the Brethren Discipleship Ministries is announcing an opportunity to share prayers in response to the general secretary’s letter following the violence of Jan. 6 at the US Capitol.
- Treaty prohibiting nuclear weapons receives 50th ratification
By Nathan Hosler On Oct. 24, the United Nations received its 50th ratification for the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW). As a result, the treaty will “enter into force” in 90 days, on Jan. 22, 2021, and become international law. While this will not immediately eliminate the threat of nuclear war, it