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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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January 8, 2014

Human Trafficking Awareness Day

January is human trafficking awareness month and January 11 is human trafficking awareness day. The year 2014 marks the 151th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation. President Abraham Lincoln, upon signing the Emancipation Proclamation said, “I never, in my life, felt more certain that I was doing right than I do in signing this paper.” Because of the groundbreaking work of our ancestors, slavery was outlawed in the United States.  However the legacies of chattel slavery continue to haunt our society even as we turn to face a new form of slavery: human trafficking.

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A ...

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August 30, 2013

Stated Clerk Statement on Syria

The Rev. Gradye Parsons, Stated Clerk of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) issued a statement today (August 30) in the wake of the escalating violence in Syria, calling upon U.S. and world leaders to refrain from military action.

"For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1)

We are deeply concerned about events in Syria. We grieve for our brothers and sisters who have suffered so deeply for so long. We yearn for an end to the bloodshed and renew our call for a cease-fire and ...

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August 6, 2013

New US Ambassador to the United Nations

Today, Ambassador Samantha Power presented her credentials to Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. 

Below is a statement made by Ambassador Power prior to presenting her credentials:

Ambassador Power: Hello everybody. I'm Samantha Power. I'm totally delighted to be here-so honored, so thrilled to have started work as the U.S. Ambassador to United Nations. As many of you know, I'm going to meet with the Secretary-General so as to present my credentials. I've worked with the Secretary-General over the last few years at the White House-worked very effectively with him-and I'm looking very much forward to ...

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December 2, 2012

International Day for the Abolition of Slavery

Today is the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery.  The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)'s Human Trafficking Roundtable has ways for Presbyterians to get involved in ending modern day slavery.

Below is the statement from UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.


Eighty-five years have passed since the entry into force of the Slavery Convention, yet this dehumanizing practice has acquired new manifestations in the 21st century.

Every day, in all regions of the world, women are trafficked, sold and locked in brothels for sexual exploitation. Little girls are forcibly married, sexually abused and used as domestic workers.  Children work in ...

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September 13, 2012

UN visit from the National Evangelical Synod of Syria & Lebanon

Yesterday, the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations welcomed our partners from the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon to advocate with governments of the United Nations Security Council.  Each representative we met received a package including letters from the Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon, stories of what is happening to Christians in Syria, the PC(USA)’s history in the region as well as a copy of the PC(USA)’s policy adopted by the 220th General Assembly (2012).  Presbyterian Disaster Assistance coordinates the PC(USA) response to the humanitarian crisis in Syria.

In each of ...

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June 25, 2012

UN Committee on the Rights of the Child examines the US

The United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child met last week with nongovernmental organizations that offered recommendations to the United States to improve its efforts to stop the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography.  ECPAT-USA, a partner of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)’s human trafficking roundtable submitted an alternate report to the Committee. 

ECPAT-USA has posted a description of the process as well as the alternate report. 

To learn more about what Presbyterians are doing around the issue of human trafficking, visit the Human Trafficking Roundtable.

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July 11, 2011

A visit to the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations

Rev. Balázs ÓDOR, Ecumenical Officer for the Reformed Church in Hungary visited the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations on Friday.  We had the opportunity to share how the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and the Reformed Church in Hungary are engaging in faith and public policy advocacy. 

The Reformed Church in Hungary engages the European Union on advocacy issues driven by their faith and policy.  The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) with the World Communion of Reformed Churches advocates at the United Nations in New York and in Washington, DC.

Presbyterians can trace the joining of public policy ...

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June 6, 2011

Prayers for Sudan- in New York City!

On Ascension Sunday, I attended morning service at Broadway Presbyterian Church in New York City. I was moved when in the prayers and concerns, I noticed the Season of Prayer with the People of Sudan listed as a specific prayer request.  Broadway Presbyterian Church has asked its members to join us in the season of prayer.

In the United States, we will be praying at 11:00 a.m. (EST).  We have invited our sisters and brothers in Sudan to pray with us wherever you are; pray individually or gather with your community or an ecumenical community of an interfaith ...

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