Peace Out! Week Fifty-three

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Peace Out! Week Fifty-three
EPF Welcomes New
Peace Partner Parish,
St. Aidan's-Malibu, CA!
EPF welcomes new peace partner parish, St. Aidan's-Malibu, CA! Photo, from left to right: Jennifer and Jeff Baker, members at St. Aidan's; Doni Heyn-Lamb; Melanie Atha; Randy Heyn-Lamb; and Rev. Joyce Stickney, rector at St. Aidan's. Doni and Randy are members at All Saints-Pasadena and are in leadership of EPF's Palestine-Israel Network. We had a wonderful day of worship and making new connections and renewing old friendships during coffee hour, after church at our EPF forum, and at lunch. Thanks for the hospitality and inspiration, St. Aidan's!
Paradise

I think it might be hard to live in Malibu, CA, and not believe in God. It's a majestic specimen of natural beauty, to be sure, but the people -- they are simply wonderful examples of servant leadership. I wanted to be at St. Aidan's for two reasons: First, my legal conflict resolution colleague from Alabama, Jeff Baker, who is on faculty at Pepperdine Law School, worships there and I was eager to see him and catch up. Since leaving Alabama, Jeff and his family (including his dear wife, Jennifer, who I just met and who serves on the Board at Camp Stevens [which serves both the Diocese of Los Angeles and the Diocese of San Diego as Diocesan Camp]) lifelong champions of justice, have become Episcopalians. It is always heartening to me when my collaborative law world and my EPF world intersect. Second, Randy and Doni Heyn-Lamb, who are leaders in the EPF Palestine Israel Network and who worship at All Saint's-Pasadena, have very generously been helping to curate our peace pilgrimage here in Southern California, and they know St. Aidan's rector, Rev. Joyce Stickney. Randy and Doni felt very confident that I would enjoy knowing Joyce+ and her remarkable parish, and they were not wrong!

A few specific examples of what I learned from the wonderful parishioners of St. Aidan's I will share in the hope that it will help and inspire those of you working on peace and justice issues.

First, from parishioner Joe Picard: Joe mentioned author Paul K. Chappell, who is deep into promoting peace literacy. Paul is author of Soldiers of Peace, the sixth in a series of seven books that he’s writing related to peace – Road to Peace series. The seventh book is nearing completion. You can go to https://www.peaceliteracy.org/ to learn more about Paul's peace literacy initiative. You can also go to https://paulkchappell.com/ to learn more about his books, speaking schedule, leadership training, videos, and articles. Joe encourages us to check out these resources, which can enrich our ability to talk about and promote peace.

Second, from parishioner Craig Detweiler: Craig is in the film industry himself (we spoke of movies which might inspire and edify our peace partners who have films series or movie nights in support of their EPF work) and recommends these new films that align well with EPF's work and feature faith as a source of resistance:

A HIDDEN LIFE

https://www.vox.com/culture/2019/5/20/18631526/a-hidden-life-review-terrence-malick

And CLEMENCY

https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/movies/story/2019-12-26/review-clemency-alfre-woodard

Craig notes that both of these film reviews are from critics at
major media outlets who write from a strong Christian social justice position.
Craig has developed an extensive network over the past 20 years through
his work at Fuller Seminary with Reel Spirituality
and also the Windrider Forum. He attends the Sundance Film Festival every
year and ends up seeing films like "For Sama" and "The Cave" about Syria
or "Newtown" and the forthcoming "Us Kids" about Parkland survivors. I love the idea of using film to learn more about and launch conversations about our social justice issues.

While I was there, St. Aidan's was collecting hand-made gifts for the orphanage they support in Tijuana, Mexico, and were in the process of planning to visit with the children in person to deliver the gifts. Learn more about this vital ministry at
https://vidajovendemexico.org.

Last, but not least, Sunday was, of course, the celebration of the Baptism of Our Lord. Whenever we renew our baptismal promises, among them to "strive for justice and peace among all people, and to respect the dignity of every human being" with God's help, it is meet and right to talk about EPF. Rev. Joyce Stickney's sermon was pure encouragement to sally forth to do the work we are called to do, knowing all the while that God has our back.

Welcome to EPF, St. Aidan's! You have already given us a lot of courage and inspiration, and we look forward to more years of laboring in the vineyard, together.

NEW LEADERSHIP! Last week, we announced the election of four new National Executive Council members. Below, we profile new NEC member Kathy McGregor of Fayetteville, Arkansas:
Kathy McGregor is the founder and project director for the Prison Story Project (www.prisonstoryproject.com), a ministry of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church (www.stpaulsfay.org) in Fayetteville, Arkansas. She is deeply dedicated to abolition of the death penalty, criminal justice reform, and the social justice ministries of EPF. A former union organizer and hospice nurse, Kathy will be graduating from Iona Initiative Arkansas in June of 2020 as a candidate for ordination to the vocational diaconate. She is honored to be elected to service on the NEC, and brings many gifts and years of experience to this leadership position. Welcome, Kathy!
INSPIRATION FOR THE UPCOMING MLK HOLIDAY WEEKEND
"Power without love is reckless and abusive, and love without power is sentimental and anemic. Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice, and justice at its best is power correcting everything that stands against love.” Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Presiding Bishop, Michael Curry, congratulates Episcopal Peace Fellowship on 80 years
Presiding Bishop Michael Curry
congratulates EPF on 80 years of loving action and witness,
declaring that our activity is,
"Nothing less than the work of God!"

Click HERE to give to our campaign!

It's not too soon to be thinking about General Convention, which will take place June 30-July 9, 2021 in Baltimore, Maryland! Are you or your parish interested in helping EPF plan for our time in Baltimore? If you are in or near Maryland and wish to serve on our ad hoc committee to plan and make arrangements for our time at GC, please let Melanie Atha know. epfactnow. We'd love to have your energy, vision and connections to help our leadership have an effective and inspiring presence next year!

Our upcoming schedule:

Jan. 19 All Saint's, Pasadena, CA

Jan. 26 St. Paul's Cathedral, San Diego, CA

Feb. 2 St. Bartholomew, Poway, CA

Feb. 8 Diocese of Los Angeles (Cathedral of St. John)

Feb. 9 Cathedral of St. John, Los Angeles, CA

April 17-19 Detroit, EPF NEC meeting

Are you near any of our planned stops and want to visit? Just shout! Steven and I are planning to spend the rest of winter in California and then move into Oregon and Washington. We will come back east in time for our NEC meeting in Detroit in April, 2020. To schedule a visit, please contact me at epfactnow.

Until next time,

power to the peaceful!

Melanie

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