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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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May 31, 2013

High-Level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda

by Brendan Welsh

Today, the High-level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda met to discuss their report, and answer questions from representatives of various countries, NGOs, and various government agencies. Michael Anderson, Prime Minister’s Special Envoy on the UN Development Goals began by introducing the five Transformative Shifts laid out in the report:

1. Leave no one behind

2. Sustainable Development at the Core

3. Transform Economies for Jobs and Inclusive Growth

4. Build Peace and Effective, Open, and Accountable Public Institutions

5. Forge a New Global Partnership

Anderson added that the report, “isn’t a set of legally-binding ...


May 31, 2013

Education and Indigenous Youth: Jahalin Bedouins

by Brendan Welsh

The Twelfth Session of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues is currently meeting at the United Nations. The NGO Working Group on Israel-Palestine held a video screening of Nowhere Left to Go and a related briefing on the Jahalin Bedouin in our office on May 22. The briefing again raised the question of indigenous parents concerned for the wellbeing of their children, particularly their education.

We were blessed to host Eid Jahalin of the Jahalin Bedouin people and Angela Godfrey-Goldstein of the Jahalin Association. Eid spoke to us about the struggles of his people living in the ...


May 30, 2013

Malawi: The Big Picture

from the email newsletter of the Presbytery of Wabash Valley
by Phyllis Wezeman, First Presbyterian Church of South Bend & Malawi Mission Network

Malawi Seminar outside UN"Malawi:  The Big Picture," a three-day seminar co-sponsored by the Malawi Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and the Presbyterian Ministry of the United Nations, was attended by twenty-two people from the Presbytery of Wabash Valley.  Members of First Presbyterian Church of Peru, First Presbyterian Church of South Bend, and Westminster Presbyterian Church of South Bend traveled to New York City to learn more about the United Nations work in Malawi, Africa.

Speakers included staff ...


May 30, 2013

Indigenous Peoples and Freedom of Religion

by Marissa Costello

Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues logoOn May 22, 2013 I attended a side event of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues entitled “Indigenous Peoples and Freedom of Religion.” Speakers included individuals who are members of various tribes such as the Apaches and Sand Hill Indians but individuals from NGOs also participated. People from all walks of life came to educate themselves on the issues that indigenous peoples face and what are the possible solutions to address these issues.

Three key speakers served on the indigenous peoples’ panel:  Roberto Mukaro Borrero, Chief Ronald Yonaguska Holloway, and Steven Gonzales. Mr. Borrero is a consultant ...


May 30, 2013

South Sudan: Church Leaders Detained

from Amnesty International

Two members of the Presbyterian Church in South Sudan, Reverend Idris Joshua Idris Nalos and Pastor Trainee David Gayin, were arrested from their homes by security forces on 19 May. They are being detained incommunicado, without access to a lawyer or their family, and are at risk of torture or other forms of ill-treatment.

On 19 May at 8pm security forces entered Reverend Idris Joshua Idris Nalos’ house in South Sudan’s capital, Juba, and according to eyewitnesses, fired three gunshots in the air, before proceeding to beat the Reverend and take him in away in a ...

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