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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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October 30, 2013

Celebrate World Day of Prayer and Action for Children and Universal Children's Day

World Day of Prayer and Action logoThe World Day of Prayer and Action for Children is celebrated on Universal Children's Day (20 November) by secular and faith-based organizations working to end violence against children. The World Day brings people together to pray and act for the well-being of children. Universal Children’s Day also commemorates the adoption of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1989

Celebrate the World Day of Prayer and Action on November 20 or on a Sunday before or after that date.

Ideas for prayer and worship

Ideas for action

Groups working on issues affecting children

About ...


October 29, 2013

Religious Freedom

Yesterday, I joined ecumenical colleagues from the Lutheran World Federation and the World Council of Churches at a special event hosted by the government of Canada looking at ways the United Nations can encourage and protect religious freedom around the world. Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief, Dr. Heiner Bielefeldt spoke of the importance of looking at the human right of freedom of religion or belief in concert with all other human rights.

Dr. Bielefeldt’s latest report examines religious freedom in 25 states.  The Special Rapportuer for freedom of religion or belief issues a report to the ...


October 24, 2013

Orange Day: October 25 - safe public spaces for women and girls

Reposted from the UNiTE to End Violence against Women campaign

In July last year the Secretary-General’s UNiTE to End Violence against Women campaign proclaimed every 25th of the month as Orange Day. Initiated and led by the UNiTE campaign Global Youth Network, worldwide activities implemented on this day by UN country offices and civil society organizations strive to highlight issues relevant to preventing and ending violence against women and girls, not only once a year, on 25 November (International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women), but every month.

Under the heading ‘Safe Spaces for Women and Girls ...


October 24, 2013

A band of sisters

by Deborah Wright

group gathered in Muir WoodsUnited Nations Day took on a new sense of meaning for me starting back in the late 90's when I was first invited by Elana Rozeman, an American born Orthodox Jew who had emigrated to Israel 20 years before, put out the word that a group of interfaith women were going to have a meditative walk through Marin County's Muir Woods to the place where, in May of 1945, original charter of the United Nations had been signed.

Elana, coincidentally also the sister of the man in my life, had, in 1997, lived through a ...


October 20, 2013

Addressing the root causes of the conflict in South Sudan

From Presbyterian World Mission

Find ways to support our sisters and brothers in South Sudan.

The government of South Sudan has recently taken laudable steps to halt killings and human rights abuses by members of the armed forces, but South Sudan’s people still face multiple threats from inter-ethnic tensions, entrenched patterns of violence, natural disasters and conflict in neighboring Sudan.

South Sudan became an independent country on July 9, 2011, following a referendum in which its people overwhelmingly voted to separate from Sudan.  The referendum, agreed under a 2005 peace deal with Sudan, ended decades of civil war, but ...

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