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Swords into plowshares

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Swords into Plowshares is the blog of the Peacemaking Program and the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations of the Presbyterian Mission Agency of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

Seeking peace. Striving for justice. Together.

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September 26, 2012

A family's story from Syria

This story was provided by our partners in the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon during their visit to New York and our ministry.

Mr. J. is in his sixties, has a wife and three children—one son and two daughters.  Mr. J. lost his work and his older daughter did as well. His wife and his younger daughter don’t work. He tells his story:

From the beginning of 2011 we are suffering this crisis and the violence. We were always waiting for this violence comes to its end, but things became worse.  Our house got bombed in ...


September 26, 2012

A story from Homs, Syria

This story was provided by our partners in the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon during their visit to New York and our ministry.

The “Evangelical Old People’s Home” in Homs, Syria has a uniqueness all of its own: because of its ecumenical nature for one thing. It is run by both the Evangelical Church and the “Two Most Sacred Hearts” Maronite Order. A joint daily worship is held.

Nowadays, because the church building in Homs was strongly damaged, the congregation meets in the “Home” for its Sunday morning services, and other activities.  The “Home” hosts people from ...


September 25, 2012

U.S. commitment to address human trafficking

Our fight against human trafficking is one of the great human rights causes of our time, and the United States will continue to lead it…

President Barack Obama, September 25, 2012

Our partners at ECPAT-USA issued the following statement in response to President Obama's call:

Learn about the work of the Presbyterian Church's Human Trafficking Roundtable.

Your gifts to the Peacemaking Offering help support Presbyterian efforts to end human trafficking. 

Use a Peacemaking Offering bulletin insert: Human Trafficking: Breaking Down the Walls.

Presbyterian Representative Ryan Smith serves on the ECPAT-USA board.



September 25, 2012

President Obama addresses the UN General Assembly

President Obama and other world leaders are in town this week for the 67th United Nations General Assembly.  I had the opportunity to join the President and others in the opening of the General Debate this morning.  Below is President Obama's speech.

THE WHITE HOUSE

Office of the Press Secretary

Remarks by the President to the UN General Assembly

United Nations Headquarters

New York, New York

10:22 A.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Mr. President, Mr. Secretary General, fellow delegates, ladies and gentleman:  I would like to begin today by telling you about an American named Chris Stevens.

Chris ...


September 24, 2012

The future we want: International Day of Peace 2012

Grace Bickers, volunteer intern with the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations, wrote this reflection.

September 21 was the International Day of Peace, and this year’s theme was “Sustainable Peace for a Sustainable Future.” The theme was planned to go along with the Rio+20 Conference of Sustainable Development that took place this summer.

The theme urges us to think about the role that the environment and natural resources play in conflict. Questions of ownership and management of these resources, including precious metals and stones, oil, and water, can directly contribute to conflict. Managing these resources in a sustainable ...

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