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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.).

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Posts with tag: presbyterian ministry at the united nations

October 12, 2014

Happy Birthday, United Nations

United Nations Day PosterUnited Nations Day - October 24 - marks the day the UN Charter entered into force in 1945.

How will you celebrate this day? Here are some ideas:

Pray for those who work in the United Nations system.

Pray for the United Nations.

Use a hymn written by the Rev. Carolyn Winfrey-Gillette. The hymn in bulletin format. The hymn with music. Check out a video of the hymn.

Participate in Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF a program started by Presbyterians.

Learn more about the United Nations.

Organize a seminar through the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations.

Make a gift to the Presbyterian Ministry ...

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November 20, 2013

The Growing Voice of the Red Hands

by Esther Lee

Red handsIt is our joy to announce that this year, Cameroon (4 Feb 2013) and Zimbabwe (22 May 2013) ratified or acceded to the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflict. The momentum continues to build. Thanks to all who participated.

The Red Hands made by Presbyterians all over the country are delivered to the permanent missions at the United Nations asking them to encourage their governments to sign and ratify the protocol. Though this treaty does not guarantee absence of children in the military forces ...

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January 15, 2013

Children are children, not soldiers - 11 years on

‘Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs.’ – Matthew 19:14

February 12, 2013 marks the eleventh anniversary of the entry into force of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict.

Find worship resources, ideas for participating in the Red Hand Campaign, and suggestions for further study for this occasion. Red hands being madeThey may be used at any time.

UNICEF estimates that more than 300,000 children – boys and girls under the ...

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September 14, 2012

Bob Smylie named director emeritus of Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations

Many thanks to the Presbyterian Mission Agency Board for recognizing Bob Smylie's good and faithful service!

From the Presbyterian News Service

Written by Jerry Van Marter


The Rev. Robert F. Smylie, who represented the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) at the United Nations for 27 years until his retirement in 2002, was named director emeritus of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations today (Sept. 14) by the Presbyterian Mission Agency Board (formerly the General Assembly Mission Council).

Smylie, who schooled generations of Presbyterians ― including this writer ― in faith-based responses to global issues and problems, served as associate for ...

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September 4, 2012

The Stories of our Lives

Rochelle Rawls-Shaw preached this sermon on Sunday, September 2 at the First Presbyterian Church of Whitestone. A student at San Francisco Theological Seminary, Rochelle is doing an academic year internship with the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations.

Matthew 16:13 – 17
When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?”  They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; other say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”  “But what about you?” he asked.  “Who do you say I am?”  Simon Peter answered, “You are ...

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June 15, 2012

Seminar explores peace and justice in Israel and Palestine

by Elodie de Bethmann

Seminar groupOn 13 June, the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations held a seminar about Peace and Justice in Israel and Palestine for an intergenerational group from The First Presbyterian Church at Caldwell, New Jersey. The group members have recently been discussing the Kairos Palestine Document and have been particularly interested in the pursuit of peace and justice in Palestine and Israel.

The first speaker was from the UN Department of Political Affairs, Division of Palestinian Rights. He spoke about the conflict by setting it within its historical context and explained how the UN addresses issues related ...

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May 7, 2012

A conversation on human trafficking

The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations invites you to

A Conversation on Human Trafficking with

Noelle Damico
Associate for Fair Food, Presbyterian Hunger Program

Thursday, May 10
10:30 AM – Noon

Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations
777 UN Plaza, 7th Floor

Noelle Damico brings extensive experience and expertise to the topic. She has been a keynote panelist at the US Department of Justice’s National Human Trafficking Conference in 2010, a keynote speaker at the Houston Rescue and Restore National Conference in 2011, and a keynote speaker at the Freedom Network USA’s 2009 conference. She has also ...

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March 20, 2012

Women share stories of hope at the United Nations

Women make up the majority of the world’s poor. The reality of the world today is that women are disproportionately affected by poverty, due to unequal access to resources and opportunities, discriminatory land and inheritance laws, and unequal distribution of household resources. Violence against women persists, particularly in regions ravaged by war and natural disasters.

Meeting So begins Allie Naskret's reflection on the process and experience of the 56th Session of the Commission of the Status of Women. A student at Princeton Theological Seminary, Allie serves as a field education student with the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations ...

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March 9, 2012

1,000 Days: Improving Nutrition for Rural Women

By Nancy Neal

Isatou JallowOn Friday, March 1,  at the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women in New York, Bread for the World and the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) co-sponsored a parallel event called 1,000 Days: Improving Nutrition for Rural Women. Other co-sponsors included the Women's Missionary Society of the AME Church, Franciscans International, the 1,000 Days Partnership, Save the Children, and Family Care International. The effort was coordinated by staff at The Hunger Project. A standing room only crowd of over 100 came out to hear about the importance of maternal and child nutrition ...

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March 7, 2012

Tap Project at the CSW

Presbyterian participants at the 56th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women helped provide clean water for children around the world. They conributed to the UNICEF Tap Project for the coffee and tea provided by the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. You could do the same during a coffee hour, fellowship meal, or other time people gather.

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March 7, 2012

What I learned at CSW56

Rhonda Everdyke and Leah Ntuala in conversationThe Rev. Leah Ntuala, pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Seneca Falls, served as part of the Presbyterian delegation to the 56th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women. It marked the first time she had attended the Commission. She returned to preach in Seneca Falls on Sunday 4 March.

She shared her first reflections on the CSW experience:

Courage does not always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "I will try again tomorrow."

Mary Ann Radmacher

I heard about CSW56 through the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. I ...

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January 19, 2012

Conversation about caring for creation

The participants in the conversation on caring for creationCongregations care for creation in a variety of ways:

Recycling
Community Supported Agriculture projects
Worship
Bible Study
Energy Audits
Insulation
Geo-thermal energy

Participants gathered for a conversation at the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations identified these and other ways that congregations and faith communities can care faithfully for God's creation of which we are a part.

Representatives of five congregations took part: First Chinese Presbyterian Church, Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church, Huguenot Memorial Church, Old Bergen Church, and the Presbyterian Church of the Mountain. Rebecca Barnes-Davies, associate for Environmental Ministries, joined the group as did the members of the ...

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January 18, 2012

Caring for God's Creation

Congregations and communities caring for God's creation
January 19, 2012
3:00 - 5:00 p.m.
Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations
777 UN Plaza, 7th Floor
Corner of 1st Avenue and 44th Street

If you are in the New York City area, join us for this conversation with our Doctor of Ministry class and Rebecca Barnes-Davies, associate for Environmental Ministries

The earth is the Lord’s and all that is in it,
   the world, and those who live in it;

Psalm 24:1

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January 10, 2012

The earth is God's

Group touring United NationsWhat if rather than looking at the environments as a subject for study, we took the environment as a lens or a filter through which we viewed the other issues we face?

That question lies at the heart of the January Term Doctor of Ministry class that began on Monday, January 9 and will run through Friday, January 20 at the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. Dr. Mark Douglas of Columbia Theological Seminary is teaching the course.

Monday, January 9 saw conversations about the United Nations and the Presbyterian Minstry at the United Nations.

On Tuesday, January 10, class ...

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January 4, 2012

UN officials speak out on violence in South Sudan

The United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator in South Sudan, Ms. Lise Grande reported yesterday on the humanitarian crisis occurring in the Jonglei state.  The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has reported, “The UN is mounting a ‘massive emergency support programme’ to help thousands of people return home after inter-communal clashes between the Lou Nuer and Murle communities in South Sudan’s Jonglei state.”

OCHA reports, “In 2011, more than 1,100 people have lost their lives, and some 63,000 people have been displaced by inter-communal violence in Jonglei state. The number of people killed and displaced from ...

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December 29, 2011

The last seminar of 2011

Conversation around tables at Missouri Union Presbytery seminarThirteen individuals came from Missouri Union Presbytery for the final seminar of the year at the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. Meeting on December 12 and 13, the group explored issues related to the changes in the Arab world referred to as the Arab Spring or Arab Awakening.

Speakers (many present through the technology of Skype) included:

Amgad Beblawi, PC(USA) area coordinator for the Middle East, Europe, and Central Asia, addressed impacts of the Arab Awakening on churches.

Roger Powers, pastor of Light Street Presbyterian Church in Baltimore, MD, spoke about the role of nonviolence in the Arab ...

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December 29, 2011

Sharing hopes

Hug-a-Planet with hopes on Post-it-NotesEach Thursday, the community gathers for worship at the Church Center for the United Nations. Different groups take turns leading in proclamation and prayer.

On Thursday, December 14, the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations had the privilege to provide leadership. The service focused on inviting participants to share their hopes for the world during Advent.

Peng Leong (who took the accompanying picture), Ricky Velez-Negron, and Ryan Smith led the service.

The question posed that day remains, as a follower of Jesus Christ - what are your hopes for the world and its people?

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December 10, 2011

Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations Year in Review ~ 2011

Presbyterian Ministry at the UN logo - gun sculpture and flagsIn 2011, your gifts to the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations helped Presbyterians advocate for peace and justice in the name of Jesus Christ, based on policies of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) General Assemblies, to the United Nations.

The ministry participated in working groups on the following issues:

Public presentations were arranged for PC(USA) partners from:

Introductions to UN programs ...

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December 10, 2011

Human Rights Day

As we celebrate Human Rights Day today, I reflect on the words of United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said a few days earlier on the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery, “To eradicate contemporary forms of slavery, we need new strategies and measures that can unite all actors. While Governments bear the primary responsibility, the private sector has an integral role to play.”  Couldn’t this same argument be made in regards to human rights?

Governments certainly play a large role creating, implementing and changing strategies to protect human rights.  With that said, we as global citizens, the ...

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October 31, 2011

Launch of the International Year of Cooperatives

Today, the United Nations General Assembly will launch the International Year of the Cooperatives.  Mongolia has sponsored the resolution to designate 2012 as the International Year. 

Today, I join colleagues from the world governments and non-governmental organizations at this launch.  This afternoon, the former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown MP will join H.E. Mr. Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, President of the UN General Assembly, H.E. Dr. Asha-Rose Migiro, Deputy Secretary-General , Dame Pauline Green, Cooperative Representative and member states will join for the launch.

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) will celebrate this year with the Presbyterian Ministry at the ...

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October 24, 2011

Peter Tibi visits New York

Commissioning by laying on of handsOn Saturday afternoon (October 22), after a walk through Central Park, the Rev. Peter Tibi took a nap. He was entitled.

Peter, from the world's newest country - South Sudan, participated in the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program's International Peacemakers Program. He made visits to South Carolina, Iowa, Georgia, Colorado, and Tennessee before coming to New York. In each location, he shared about the work of RECONCILE to heal trauma, reconcile conflict, build community, and enhance governance in South Sudan.

On his way home, he stopped in New York to make some visits within the UN Community. He arrived on Wednesday ...

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October 23, 2011

No child soldiers

Red Hands Banner

The group from the Presbytery of Geneva made Red Hands during their seminar.

They also made Red Hands before they came to the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations for their seminar.

This banner was made by members of First Presbyterian Church in Gowanda, New York.

Thanks to all for their witness to a world in which children are children, not soldiers!

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October 17, 2011

Presbyterian Women say "No Child Soldiers"

They brought Red Hands.

They made Red Hands.

They made plans to create Red Hands in their congregations.

Red Hands displayThe Presbyterian Women in the Presbytery of New York City gathered for their Fall Gathering on October 15 at the First Presbyterian Church in Williamsbridge.

Their varied program featured a presentation by the Rev. Kellie Anderson-Picallo on the diverse gifts God gives to us; the Rev. Lynn West on working for a world in which hunger is no more; and the Rev. Rev. Nadine Hundertmark preaching on claiming our voice and serving Jesus. I also had the chance to talk about the ...

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October 14, 2011

Ribbons proclaim hope at Church Center for United Nations

Ribbon of Hope tapestry - nine-foot tallOn October 12, four nine-foot tall tapestries appeared in Tillman Chapel at the Church Center for the United Nations. Thousands of ribbons decorated each tapestry. Each ribbon carried a message of hope, remembrance, and healing.

To mark the 10th anniversary of September 11, 2001, Prepare New York created the Ribbons of Hope project. They report that "more than 20,000 ribbons, were created by people throughout the 5 boroughs, across the country and around the world." The ribbons combine to create a tapestry as "colorful and diverse as New York itself" - as colorful and diverse as God's world.

Prepare ...

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October 14, 2011

Children from Newark, NY say no child soldiers

Red Hands banner

The group from the Presbytery of Geneva made Red Hands during their seminar.

They also made Red Hands before they came to the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations for their seminar.

This banner was made by the children (ages 3 to 6) and teachers at the Roosevelt Children's Center in Newark, NY.

Thanks to all for their witness to a world in which children are children, not soldiers!

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October 14, 2011

First Presbyterian Church of Horseheads says no child soldiers

Banner with red hands and mittensThe group from the Presbytery of Geneva made Red Hands during their seminar.

They also made Red Hands before they came to the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations for their seminar.

The Sunday School children of the First Presbyterian Church of Horseheads made this banner. The mittens attached to the banner were made by the church's knitting club.

Thanks to all for their witness to a world in which children are children, not soldiers!

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October 14, 2011

Geneva Presbytery says "No" to child soldiers

Folks on UN TourFrom the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York, they journeyed to New York City. Thirty-six in number, of many different ages, the group from the Presbytery of Geneva included a visit to the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations as part of their trip. On Saturday, October 8, we met outside the United Nations.

As I came up First Avenue, I saw a group gathered at the entrance. I guessed they were Presbyterians from Geneva, but I was not sure until I saw one of them carrying a stack of Red Hands - addressing the use of children as soldiers ...

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October 5, 2011

A Requiem for the Fallen

A full choir led a tribute to the heroes and victims of September 11, 2001 at the First Chinese Presbyterian Church of New York City.

The audience came for solace.  And they received that and more.

The choir and musiciansLed by a 30-member choir under the intense and passionate direction of conductor Yu Ong Celia, the performance of the works of Gabriel Faure (1845-1924) in Latin was superb. The full choir sang its hearts out.  Accompanied by the resident organist, Yu-Zheng Jiang, a violinist, three violists, two cellists, a bass, two horns, and four soloists, they  filled the sanctuary with the sweetest music ...

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September 29, 2011

United Nations Day - October 24

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has long supported the United Nations and its work.

The anniversary of the entry into force of the United Nations Charter on October 24, 1945 has been celebrated as United Nations Day since 1948. It has traditionally been marked throughout the world by meetings, discussions and exhibits on the achievements and goals of the Organization.

Ideas for observing the day include:

Lift up the work of the United Nations in prayer.

Pray for those who work in the United Nations system.

Pray for the United Nations.

Use a hymn written by Carolyn Winfrey-Gillette. The ...

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September 29, 2011

A Prayer for Peace in Our Time

Here is a prayer for United Nations Day, October 24, from one of the resources of the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program. O God, Our Father, O God, Our Mother: we pray for all your children on earth, of every nation and...

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September 19, 2011

Environment and Ecumene - A January Term D. Min. Class

Environment and Ecumene
A Doctor of Ministry Course at the United Nations, New York City
Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations and Columbia Theological Seminary
January 9-20, 2012


Every two years, the Presbyterian United Nations Office and Columbia Theological Seminary partner to hold a Doctor of Ministry Course on a topic of importance for the world and faith communities. This year, we are pleased to announce that this year’s course will examine “Environment and Ecumene.” The course will be held from January 9-20, 2012 at the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations in New York. Dr. Mark Douglas will ...

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September 9, 2011

Statement by High Commissioner for Human Rights

Today, Ms. Navanethem Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights issued a statement the United Nations Human Rights Committee.  The statement, as distributed by the Office of the High Commissioner is available here.

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September 7, 2011

A picture tells of our seminar ministries

Anne of the Presbytery of West Virginia before Givat Haviva posters

Photo by Nellie Howard.

This is one of my favorite recent pictures. It combines two important events that recently took place at the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations.

It was taken during the seminar for the Presbyery of West Virginia and shows Ann Patterson of First Presbyterian Church of Charleston, WV.

In the background are posters created by participants in the Youth Making a Difference seminar that suggest ways to observe the International Day of Peace.

A wonderful reminder of two wonderful events! Thanks, Nellie.

Contact us to schedule a seminar for your group. Your gifts to the Presbyterian ...

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August 30, 2011

Cities Are Not Targets

 

Woman signs the petition.

D.J. Tephabock of the Presbytery of West Virginia signs the Cities Are Not Targets petition during a tour of the United Nations.

The United Nations has worked to eliminate nuclear weapons since it came into existence. One of the exhibits on the tour of the UN building focuses on this aspect of the UN's work. The exhibit includes an opportunity to sign the Cities Are Not Targets petition. This petition, sponsored by Mayors for Peace, calls for the total abolition of nuclear weapons by 2020. Not able to come to New York? Sign the petition online.

Since 1946 ...

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August 25, 2011

Ribbons of Hope at worship this morning

Red ribbons with writing on them in a basketEach Thursday morning we gather for worship at the Church Center for the United Nations. Different ministries take a turn leading the service. This morning brought the turn of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. We focused on the 10th Anniversary of September 11, 2001. We did so to allow participants to create prayer ribbons for the Ribbons of Hope Project and to model this project for use in other places and settings

For the service, we adapted a liturgy from the National Council of Churches created by written by the Rev. Dr. Eileen Lindner and the Rev. Jon ...

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August 24, 2011

The United Nations, Israel and Palestine - An Overview

Since 1948 General Assemblies of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and its predecessor denominations have repeatedly addressed the Middle East and particularly Israel and Palestine. The Presbyterian position has consistently been to affirm the right of Israel to exist as a sovereign state within secure, internationally recognized borders and the right of the Palestinians to self-determination, including the right to the establishment of a neighboring independent, sovereign state toward the end of establishing a just and durable peace. Read actions of Assemblies from 1997 to 2010.

The Presbyterian Church has been involved in mission efforts in the Middle East ...

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August 11, 2011

Changing the World: International Youth Day

Tune in the live Webcast to listen to all the very inspiring stories of these young girls. it's all about Changing The World, which is the theme of tomorrow's International Youth Day, show your support, join the Change Your World 2011 campaign!

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August 1, 2011

Protecting human rights of older persons

The following is taken from Newsletter of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs at the United Nations.  The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations is following the developments of these talks.  Look for more information soon.

 

The world’s population aged 60 or older is expected to double by 2050, to a record of 21 per cent – representing two billion people. Member States are expressing concerns about the status of older persons revolving around their social and economic situation, their participation in development and their relationship to human rights.

There is a call for increasing the visibility on the ...

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July 13, 2011

US statement on children in armed conflict

Below are remarks from U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice on the open debate on children in armed conflict held yesterday in the United Nations Security Council:

Thank you, Mr. President. We’re grateful to you, Mr. Minister, as well as to Ambassador Wittig and the German Mission for hosting this important debate and for your leadership as Chair of the Security Council Working Group. We also very much appreciate the important statements by the Secretary General, Special Representative Coomaraswamy and UNICEF Executive Director Tony Lake.

Mr. President, abuses against children in armed conflicts do not just tear at our hearts ...

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June 20, 2011

Medina + Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations + Jan Hus = The connectional church at work

youth doing activityIt is always fascinating to realize how connected the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) is.

A June 16, 2011 article in the Presbyterian News Service relates the amazing ministry of Jan Hus Presbyterian Church in Manhattan.

On June 14 and 15, 2011, a group of youth and adults from Medina Presbyterian Church in Medina, Ohio visited Jan Hus Presbyterian Church. They shared in the ministry and learned about the theology of the church that guides the ministry.

The Medina group was at Jan Hus, because they had asked the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations (where they visited for a ...

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June 15, 2011

The writing was on the wall

Writing on white boardActually it was on the white board.

And it was pretty cool.

Love God
Love yourself
Love others

It has been a while since the board in our conference room has seen such creativity.

A group of six high school students (one of whom has actually graduated is "still a high schooler at heart") from Medina Presbyterian Church arrived on Monday for a seminar. Immigration in the United States was the topic they selected.

We adapted the order of the seminar a bit as thye arrived. We began by talking about the situation in South Kordofan, Sudan. Ryan Smith, Presbyterian ...

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June 6, 2011

UN and religious freedom

The United Nations Human Rights Council and the General Assembly have encouraged the continuing efforts in all parts of the world of the Special Rapporteur [for religious freedom and belief] to examine incidents and governmental actions that are incompatible with the provisions of the Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief and to recommend remedial measures as appropriate (Human Rights Council resolution 6/37 and General Assembly resolution 61/161).

To expedite his work, the Special Rapporteur for religious freedom and belief has developed a model questionnaire that can be ...

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June 3, 2011

Glory to you our God

People worship at the Church Center for the United NationsLet our world be a place of celebration;
let our world be a meeting place.
Let justice spring from our earth,
and let the fruits of love flourish.
Let us make it possible
by respecting our diversity,
by sharing in solidarity,
by uniting hands and hearts,
by living together in harmony with creation.
And then peace will be reborn!
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding,
will guard our hearts and our minds in Christ Jesus.

With this benediction, participants in the June 2, 2011 worship service at the Church Center for the United Nations, went forth to ...

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May 31, 2011

Concerns for Christians in Egypt

We are again saddened to hear of religious discrimination in Egypt.  Today, we read of the burning of Coptic Churches.  We read: "I am feeling threatened, as does my community. I don't feel safe as a Christian at home,” from a 25 year old pharmacist.

Since the riots in Egypt have started, we continue to see an increase in violence against the Christian minorities throughout the country.  To read about the most recent struggles, please click here.

The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations continues to work with the United Nations community to promote religious freedoms around the world ...

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May 31, 2011

Moving day

Today Swords into Plowshares moves to a new home: www.pcusa.org/swords-plowshares/. Please change your bookmark to www.pcusa.org/swords-plowshares/, and continue to seek peace and pursue justice in the global community with the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations and the Presbyterian Peacemaking...

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May 31, 2011

A new beginning

Welcome to the new home for Swords into Plowshares!

We are glad you found us.

Please subscribe or bookmark www.pcusa.org/swords-plowshares/, and continue to seek peace and pursue justice in the global community with the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations and the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program

All the previously posted material will be moved to this new address.

Thanks for coming along on the journey!

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May 30, 2011

We're moving - tomorrow

Starting May 31, 2011 (tomorrow) the Swords into Plowshares blog will have a new home at www.pcusa.org/swords-plowshares/. All the content currently posted on the blog will be moved to the new address. We hope you move with us. So, please...

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May 29, 2011

A new URL for Swords into Plowshares

Swords into Plowshares will have a new home as of May 31, 2011 - and a new URL: www.pcusa.org/swords-plowshares/. Be sure to change your bookmark to www.pcusa.org/swords-plowshares/. Together we will seek peace, strive for justice, and explore ways to live...

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May 27, 2011

A brief introduction to Sudan

At the Compassion, Peace & Justice Training Day held on March 25 before Ecumenical Advocacy Days, the staff of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations led a workshop on Sudan. The workshop included a presentation on the history of...

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May 26, 2011

International Ecumenical Peace Convocation Updates

Turns out that there were challenges getting online at the International Ecumenical Peace Convocation (IEPC). Not insurmountable challenges - others managed - but challenges enough that I did not do any live-blogging from there. That said, watch for a number...

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May 7, 2011

Greetings from Geneva

The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations also represents the World Communion of Reformed Churches (WCRC) at the UN. This relationship began under one of the WCRC's predecessors - the World Alliance of Reformed Churches. The Executive Committee of the...

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May 7, 2011

Prayers for UN staff killed in Bolivia

The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations encourages all to join in prayer for four UN staff members and two others killed in a plane crash in Bolivia. We pray for family, friends, colleagues, and all who grieve at the...

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May 6, 2011

Tweeting away

The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations has joined (finally) the Twitter world. Follow us @PresbyUN

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May 6, 2011

Under the Big Tent

Join Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations staff under the Big Tent - June 30-July 2 in Indianapolis. Ryan will be taking part in the Presbyterian Peacemaking Conference. Mark will be with World Mission Matters. We will co-lead one of...

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April 30, 2011

Thursday night in Queens

"You have the coolest job." That was one of the closing comments to my time at the First Presbyterian Church in Whitestone. Pastor Andy James had invited me to visit during Lent and share about the Presbyterian Ministry at the...

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April 24, 2011

Easter blessings

Christ is risen! The staff of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations and the staff of the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program wish you a blessed Easter. May you experience afresh the joy and wonder and hope of resurrection. May you...

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April 22, 2011

A trip down memory lane

There were gulls in the background - or so they told me. I could only see a building. This evening brought my second Skype presentation on behalf of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. The Agape House Campus Ministry...

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April 18, 2011

Blessed are the peacemakers

How does the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations equip and inspire Presbyterians to make peace following Jesus? The Presbyterian Women of Monmouth Presbytery explored that question when then met on April 16 at the Presbyterian Church at Shrewsbury for...

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April 14, 2011

Our biggest seminar . . .

. . . at least since October 2010 . . . took place on April 11, 2011. On the side of the bus, we read that it was from Passaic, New Jersey. The Rev. Vicky Ney, pastor of Springfield Presbyterian...

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April 13, 2011

Forgiveness: A Time to Love and a Time to Hate

Check your local PBS listings for a new film on forgiveness. Forgiveness: A Time to Love and a Time to Hate, by Helen Whitney, explores a range of stories from personal betrayal to global reconciliation after genocide. Don Shriver, author...

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April 11, 2011

Building Sustainable Communities of Peace in Colombia

For over fifty years, the people of Colombia have endured violence that has displaced more than five million Colombians and driven another 500,000 from their country. Thousands more have died. Since 2000, the United States has provided Colombia over $7...

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April 4, 2011

The Principles and Practices of Forgiveness

How does repentance lead to forgiveness and reconciliation and the future in public life? How do we learn to love a country enough that we remember its misdeeds? What can other countries learn from the South African experience of the...

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March 29, 2011

Peacemaking in Colombia: Event at Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations

For those in New York City: Building Sustainable Communities of Peace in Colombia A Conversation and Brown Bag Lunch with The Rev. Adelaida Jiménez Cortes and The Rev. Gloria Ulloa Tuesday, April 5, 2011 Noon – 1:00 PM Church Center...

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March 18, 2011

What are your concerns for Sudan?

Milcah Lalam of RECONCILE, a mission partner of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), attended the Commission on the Status of Women. Presbyterian Women arranged for her to attend. The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations coordinated the Presbyterian presence at the...

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March 17, 2011

How you can support RECONCILE

Milcah Lalam of RECONCILE, a mission partner of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), attended the Commission on the Status of Women. Presbyterian Women arranged for her to attend. The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations coordinated the Presbyterian presence at the...

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March 16, 2011

What are your hopes for Sudan

Milcah Lalam of RECONCILE, a mission partner of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), attended the Commission on the Status of Women. Presbyterian Women arranged for her to attend. The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations coordinated the Presbyterian presence at the...

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March 16, 2011

The story of Joseph

Milcah Lalam of RECONCILE, a mission partner of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), attended the Commission on the Status of Women. Presbyterian Women arranged for her to attend. The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations coordinated the Presbyterian presence at the...

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March 15, 2011

How does your faith guide your work?

Milcah Lalam of RECONCILE, a mission partner of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), attended the Commission on the Status of Women. Presbyterian Women arranged for her to attend. The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations coordinated the Presbyterian presence at the...

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March 14, 2011

The role of art in trauma healing

Milcah Lalam of RECONCILE, a mission partner of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), attended the Commission on the Status of Women. Presbyterian Women arranged for her to attend. The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations coordinated the Presbyterian presence at the...

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March 12, 2011

Advocacy resources on Libya and Côte d'Ivoire

Reports from Libya and Côte d'Ivoire tell of violence and displacement. Ecumenical Women at the United Nations — an international coalition of church denominations and ecumenical organizations, including the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) — has developed tools to encourage women and...

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March 10, 2011

How does RECONCILE Work

Milcah Lalam of RECONCILE, a mission partner of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), attended the Commission on the Status of Women. Presbyterian Women arranged for her to attend. The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations coordinated the Presbyterian presence at the...

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March 10, 2011

What is RECONCILE?

Milcah Lalam of RECONCILE, a mission partner of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), attended the Commission on the Status of Women. Presbyterian Women arranged for her to attend. The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations coordinated the Presbyterian presence at the...

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March 3, 2011

Inspiring and hopeful with more work to come

by Ryan Smith On March 2, 2011, representatives from the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations and Presbyterian Women joined Milcah Lalam, a peace building development specialist with RECONCILE in Sudan with expertise in trauma healing, drama as therapy and...

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March 1, 2011

New Presbyterian representative to the United Nations

Ryan Smith has been called as the new Presbyterian representative to the United Nations on the staff of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. Ryan brings experience working in faith-based non-governmental organizations in the United Nations community and Washington....

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February 28, 2011

Now brothers and sisters

"They are now brothers and sisters, and now death amongst us shall stop." That's the promise made by Nuer women and Murle women in South Sudan who worked with RECONCILE International - a promise all the more amazing because of...

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February 25, 2011

What will I do?

Participants were asked to ponder "What will I do with what I have learned?" at the close of the Fab Five Seminar on climate change and its impacts at the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. Responses included: Push my...

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February 25, 2011

What did I learn?

Several times the question "What did I learn?" was posed to participants (young people and adults alike) in the Fab Five Seminar on climate change and its impacts at the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. At the closing of...

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February 23, 2011

Fab Five - Day Two

How does climate change affect people in . . . Bangladesh . . . Nepal . . . the Sudan . . . and Vanuatu? What might the people there do to minimize its impact? What might the people of...

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February 23, 2011

CSW Webcast

Follow the meetings of the Commission on the Status of Women on the United Nations Webcast. Presbyterians (and others) are gathering in the conference room of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations to view the Webcast.

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February 23, 2011

Intergenerational Empowerment and the Work of the Church at the 55th Commission of the Status of Women

by Honna Eichler I am currently sitting in the PC(USA) office in the UN Church Center, peering out the window at the busy UN complex below. The streets below are vibrantly full and include many from an international community dedicated...

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February 22, 2011

Presbyterians at CSW55 - 21 February 2011

About 30 Presbyterians will attend the Commission on the Status of Women. This participation is a partnership between Presbyterian Women, Racial Ethnic Young Women Together, the National Network of Presbyterian College Women, and the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations....

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February 21, 2011

We gathered

From churches and countries around the world, we gathered at the Church Center for the United Nations. Followers of Jesus Christ, seekers of justice, supporters of human rights for women, men, and all people, we gathered. To dance, to worship,...

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February 15, 2011

Where did the Red Hands go?

Red Hands were recently sent to a number of missions of member states at the United Nations asking them to ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed...

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February 14, 2011

Upcoming: side event at the CSW

Presbyterian Women are bringing Milcah Lalam of RECONCILE in Sudan to the CSW (Commission on the Status of Women) in February. The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations will host the Presbyterian presence at the CSW. RECONCILE's mission is to...

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February 9, 2011

Coming in February ... the Commission on the Status of Women

The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations is preparing to welcome Presbyterian participants for the Commission on the Status of Women from February 22 through March 4. Presbyterian Women is a key partner in this event. The Commission on the...

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February 9, 2011

Training by Compassion, Peace and Justice

PC(USA) Compassion, Peace and Justice (CPJ) ministry area will hold a training day on March 25, 2011 in conjunction with Ecumenical Advocacy Days in Washington D.C. The training day theme will be "A Justice Society and the Changing Role of...

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January 29, 2011

We can give that a try

They arrived from Boston at around 2:00 a.m. on Friday morning and by 9:30 a.m, they made it to the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. Five students, two faculty members, and an assistant from the Program for International and...

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January 12, 2011

Cooper House 2011 Winter Break Alternate Mission Trip

A group from the Cooper House Presbyterian Campus Ministry at Virginia Tech visited the offices of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations on January 11. The visit was part of their 2011 Winter Break Alternate Mission Trip. Six students...

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January 12, 2011

Eckerd College - the first visit of the year

On January 5, a class from Eckerd College visited the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. They were the first group to visit this year. The class, taught by Dr. Tony Brunello, is exploring The United Nations: Terrorism, Peacekeeping and...

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January 5, 2011

Consider fasting with the people of Sudan

People in Sudan plan to engage in the spiritual discipline of fasting in the days leading up to the January 9, 2011 referendum. Consider joining them on Friday, January 7 or at other times during that weekend. Those who are...

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December 13, 2010

International Migrants Day - December 18

December 18th has been designated International Migrants Day by the United Nations. Download A Liturgy for International Migrants Day and other resources created for this day by the Rev. Dr. Claudio Carvalhaes, professor at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, at the...

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November 27, 2010

Sudan bishops give message of hope before vote

Sudan bishops give message of hope before vote Caritas Internationalis, partner of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations, has posted a message from the Catholic bishops of Sudan in which they reflect on the upcoming referenda in their country....

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November 21, 2010

Standing with the Malagasy people in challenging times

Many Presbyterian congregations and organizations across the country have mission partnerships in Madagascar – and now our friends and mission partners, indeed the entire Malagasy people, are facing extremely challenging times. Attached is an Action Alert calling for prayer and...

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November 19, 2010

A Season of Prayer with the People of Sudan

Prayers are always in order for the people of Sudan. Prayers are particularly in order as January, 2011 draws near. A referendum on self-determination for the people of South Sudan is scheduled for January 9. On that same day, a...

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November 13, 2010

UN officials welcome release of Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi

From the United Nations News Centre: UN officials welcome release of Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the United Nations human rights chief welcomed the freeing on Saturday of pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi and urged...

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November 12, 2010

Advocacy to end the use of children as soldiers

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) joined other religious and human rights groups to contact President Obama last Friday expressing their disappointment with his decision last week to waive sanctions against four countries the State Department has identified as using child soldiers....

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November 11, 2010

Ban Ki-moon: G20 nations must not forget plight of world’s poorest at Seoul summit

From the United Nations News Centre: The world’s richest nations must take into account the needs of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people in their plans for reinforcing the global economic recovery – that was one of the key...

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November 9, 2010

Sudan humanitarian snapshot

A new resource helps provide a quick overview of the humanitarian needs in Sudan. ReliefWeb provides a map that identifies and illustrates those situations. The map includes a timeline of events leading up to the January 9, 2011 referendum in...

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October 31, 2010

Sign ad calling for release of health workers in Philippines

An appeal from the General Secretary of the National Council of Churches in the Philippines October 29, 2010 To Our Friends and Partners Around the World: Please Sign the Paid Ad to Free the 43 Health Workers (Morong 43) May...

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October 28, 2010

From the United Nations News Centre, 27 October 2010

Here are some headlines from the United Nations News Centre: UN chief mourns passing of former Argentine leador Nestor Kirchner Tensions highlight need for Lebanese parties to put national interests first - Ban UN helps Indonesian authorities assess needs after...

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October 25, 2010

Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF in the Brooklyn area

Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations If you happen to be in Brooklyn this weekend and are looking for a way to help support UNICEF's work to care for children around the world. Here's an opportunity: Brooklyn for Peace, which...

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October 21, 2010

Restore democracy, respect human rights, and protect the environment in Madagascar

Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations Restoration of democracy, respect for human rights, and protection of the environment in Madagascar. That was the heart of the message provided by Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Mission Co-worker Dan Turk and Doug Tilton, regional...

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October 18, 2010

A Prayer for the United Nations

United Nations Day is October 24. Here is a prayer from one of the resources of the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program: Great God, supreme ruler of all the earth, give vision to those who serve the United Nations. With justice and...

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October 15, 2010

Looking forward to the return!

Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations There are two broad foci to the mission of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations: Inspiring and equipping Presbyterians to live as disciples of Jesus in the global neighborhood Bearing witness for peace...

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October 13, 2010

Sudan: Peace is possible; war is not invevitable

Presbyterian United Nations Ministry Gracious God of peace, you break the bow; you snap the spear asunder; you make wars to cease. We pray that you will touch the hearts, the minds, and the spirits of the leaders of Sudan...

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October 13, 2010

Transitions

Swords into Plowshares is undergoing a transition. The name will remain the same, but there will be changes: Swords into Plowshares will become a shared blog - shared between the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations and the Presbyterian Peacemaking...

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July 23, 2010

Why should children not be soldiers?

This was a question posed at the Presbyterian Youth Triennium. Participants created red hands with answers - red hands that will be delivered to world leaders to call them to put an end to the practice of using children as...

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July 23, 2010

I pray for peace (Triennium, Day 3)

There was a steady flow of people in the exhibit hall of the Presbyterian Youth Triennium today. Many participants stopped by the booth of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations, the Office on Child Advocacy, and the Presbyterian Peacemaking...

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July 22, 2010

Almost two a minute

117 Red Hand cards were made today at the Presbyterian Youth Triennium - in one hour. That's almost two messages every minute to be sent to world leaders to tell them that children are children, not soldiers! Thanks to all...

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July 22, 2010

I pray for peace (Triennium, Day 2)

The exhibit was only open for an hour at the Presbyterian Youth Triennium today. But the hall was packed. Many participants stopped by the booth of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations, the Office on Child Advocacy, and the...

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July 21, 2010

Red Hands at Triennium - Day 1

Over 250 participants in the Presbyterian Youth Triennium created Red Hands to carry the message to world leaders that children are children, not soldiers. Some amazing messages were written: Stop the use of child soldiers: what if it was your...

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July 20, 2010

I pray for peace in . . .

The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations, the Child Advocacy Office, and the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program invited participants at the Presbyterian Youth Triennium to finish that simple statement by writing on a ribbon about eight inches in length and 5/8...

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July 19, 2010

Presbyterians Say No Child Soldiers

Follow the Presbyterian effort to end the use of child soldiers on Facebook. The Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations, the Office of Child Advocacy, and the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program have launched a new page to provide information and advocacy...

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