This past winter, Fr. John toured on behalf of Pace e Bene and Campaign Nonviolence, which he currently represents. The movement’s goal is to mainstream non-violence by ending war, poverty and global warming. He encouraged our chapter to focus on the study guide Engage: Exploring Non-violent Living at this year’s meetings. The tenets of non-violent living are to seek peace within oneself, to build non-violent relationships with our neighbors, and to take public action to build a non-violent society.
In June, we joined with Pax Christi of Southern California for an intense weekend exploring non-violent living. Together we envisioned a community where peace is a mainstream goal. We participated in exercises and role-plays to teach us how to resist violence and handle conflicts in a positive manner. We also began planning to participate in public actions for The International Day of Peace and Campaign Non-violence.
In September, Campaign Nonviolence coordinated public actions organized by grass roots groups to mark the International Day of Peace. Affiliates and other Maryknollers took part in many of the 228 actions of all sizes throughout the country.
Greater LA Area Affiliates participated in several events, including Paths to Just Peace: An Interfaith Celebration of International Peace Day. Guest speaker Kathy Kelly, peace activist, author, and co-coordinator for Voices of Creative Non-violence, spoke of average people living in Afghanistan, Gaza, and Iraq. She shared how these desperate people are for the US to stop bombing them. The event also included an interfaith panel discussion. Affiliate John Jerpe organized an action with Veterans for Peace at the Port Hueneme Naval Facility. We also joined Pax Christi and Campaign Nonviolence for a Peace Witness at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Angels.
Campaign Nonviolence plans to be a long-term movement to promote peaceful solutions to the problems we face in our violent world.