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Lutheran Peace Fellowship

24 Ways for Students to Work for Peace
Lutheran Peace Fellowship



For Yourself

1

 

Nourish yourself by reading publications that cover peace and justice issues from a Christian faith perspective. Subscribe to periodicals like Fellowship, The Other Side, Peace Notes, and Sojourners.

 

2

 

Explore the lives of peacemakers for book reports or open assignments, or for yourself: Jesus, Gandhi, King, Dorothy Day, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Rosa Parks, Oscar Romero, etc. Make a display using LPF's "Path of Hope."

 

3

 

Keep a journal. Pray. Develop a worship life that includes a vision of peace, justice, and wholeness for an all too violent world.

 

Learning with Others

4

 

Help organize films, activities, and forums on your concerns; help start or strengthen a local peace and justice group, a chapter of Lutheran Peace Fellowship, lpf@ecunet.org, 206/349-2501, www.LutheranPeace.org or Bread for the World, bread@bread.org, www.bread.org etc.

 

5

 

Take classes on peace and justice topics. Resources for organizing courses are available from the Peace and Justice Studies Association (PJSA), www.peacejusticestudies.org/

 

6

 

Urge your student group or school to pass a resolution supporting the UN "Decade for a Culture of Peace and Nonviolence" (2001-2010), endorsed by 31 ELCA synods and the Churchwide Assembly. For resources such as a model resolution, contact LPF (above) and the Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR): www.forusa.org/ other Decade materials.

 

7

 

Invite a group to go through From Violence to Wholeness, a superb discussion and activity series on the practice and spirituality of active nonviolence with a full LPF supplement (available from Lutheran Peace Fellowship or the publisher, Pace e Bene paceebene.org/)

 

8

 

Learn a foreign language. Live or travel in a foreign culture. By learning how other peoples live and see the world, you can help serve as a bridge of understanding. Contact the Center for Global Education, Augsburg College, e-mail: globaled@augsburg.edu www.augsburg.edu/global

 

9

 

Volunteer for social justice. Work in a soup kitchen, shelter, AIDS ministry, or other service. Most schools have volunteer offices as well as ways for students to earn course credit for community or fieldwork activity.

 

Advocacy

10

 

Write a letter to the editor of your student or community newspaper giving your viewpoint on a peace concern. The chance of your letter being published is greater if your letter refers to a topic recently in the news, is concise, and deals with one issue.

 

11

 

Be a thoughtful consumer. Research the practices of corporations that make the products you buy. Support businesses and public boycotts that reflect your values.

 

12

 

Protest the excessive and inappropriate violence in movies, television, video games. Encourage and empower your group with the superb videos, discussions, articles and other resources from the Center for Media Literacy, www.medialit.org

 

In the Political Sphere

13

 

When you become eligible, vote. Vote and campaign for candidates who will work for (not just talk about) justice, peace, human rights, and environmental responsibility

 

14

 

Keep up with current legislation and the position of your elected officials by getting legislative alerts and joining the lobbying efforts of Lutheran Peace Fellowship, the ELCA Washington Office in Washington, DC www.elca.org/advocacy and Lutheran Offices of Public Policy working on state-level issues.

 

15

 

Write, e-mail, call and meet with your elected officials. Express your opinion on military spending, arms control, and funding for social services and social justice. Be in touch during debates in committee or before a key vote. Join others in vigils, rallies, and actions on behalf of peace with justice.

 

In Your Church

16

 

Ask your church youth group to focus on peace issues. Study biblical and church teachings on war, peace, and conscientious objection. Ask members of your church, local peace activists, and veterans to speak. Encourage your congregation to support the Decade for Peace, 2001-2010.

 

17

 

Help plan a worship service on justice and peacemaking. Use your talent for theater, art, song, or poetry to express your views about peace and to educate others. Create a peace and justice display and a resource center at your church.

 

18

 

Encourage your congregation to help its families and committees to improve peace-making skills. Use resources from Families Against Violence Advocacy Network, http://ipj-ppj.org/FAVAN.htm

 

Personal Peacemaking

19

 

Be a peacemaker in your relationships with family and friends. Recognize that conflict is inevitable and can be a source of growth. You can learn skills of dealing with conflict from workshops, the nonviolent martial art, aikido, and such outstanding youth training programs as the AFSC’s “Help Increase the Peace,” www.afsc.org/office/baltimore-md afscinfo@afsc.org .

 

20

 

Simplify your lifestyle. Consider the relationship between over-consumption in the U.S. and poverty, injustice, and war in the Third World. Lowering consumption can reduce your need to compete and increase your ability to share.

 

In Your Future

21

 

If you are a female or male considering enlistment for military service or ROTC or a male nearing the age of 18 and facing the decision of registration for the draft, think carefully about your faith and these decisions. For information, contact the National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth (NNOMY), www.nnomy.org/

 

22

 

Give prayerful consideration to where you want to work. Consider a career in a field related to social justice, reconciliation, education, or international understanding. Think through how you feel about working for companies connected with violence in the media, or to the defense industry.

 

23

 

Consider a short-term volunteer experience before you move on to a long-term job or more school. For example, the Lutheran Volunteer Corps (LVC) www.lutheranvolunteercorps.org/ provides youth opportunities to give a year of full-time urban service for social justice, while also offering a supportive community living situation. Contact LVC at 202/387-3222.

 

24

 

Lutheran Peace Fellowship can provide you with additional information on the issues and activities presented here. LPF offers workshops, nonviolence training, and follow-up support for school and church groups.



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