His paintings look like stained glass windows. I first noticed He Qi's paintings on a number of books I bought on postcolonial readings of the Bible. I was drawn to the brilliant colors and the non-Western depictions of biblical scenes. Recently I purchased a book of his paintings entitled Look Toward the Heavens.<read more>
by Merrill R. Miller
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"…seek peace and pursue it" - Psalm 34:14<read more>
The words of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are promising. On her first day in office, she addressed State Department employees by saying, "There are three legs to the stool of American foreign policy: defense, diplomacy, and development… And we will make clear, as we go forward, that diplomacy and development are essential tools in achieving the long-term objectives of the United States. And I will do all that I can, working with you, to make it abundantly clear that robust diplomacy and effective development are the best long-term tools for securing America's future."
A young American soldier joined us for a small Bible study session we held weekly in Quang Ngai, Viet Nam back in 1972. During our study he identified himself as a "born again Christian" and asked for prayer support as he was sometimes tempted to join his army buddies in smoking, drinking and swearing.<read more>
After completing our study and prayer time we chatted amicably over tea and snacks. I learned then that he was with the Phoenix Program, a notorious military operation in Viet Nam involved in assassinations designed to identify and "neutralize" through infiltration, capture, terrorism, or assassination, any civilian infrastructure suspected of supporting the opposition forces. He went on to say that when he drove in his military jeep around town or out into the countryside, he always made sure he had his pistol ready at his side, his M16 on the passenger's seat loaded and ready for action and several grenades within easy reach. "I believe in God's protection," he said. "But I don't believe in taking chances!"
All the photos, except the ones taken on 9/11, are originals taken by Anton. Here he merges these audio and visual creations into what is one part prayer and one part autobiography.
Enjoy as he shares the inspiration behind this song and then takes you on a journey with him through the trials of foster parenting and the joys of adoption. Trek with him to places like war-torn Colombia, AIDS-stricken Botswana and impoverished Guatemala. Struggle with him to proclaim that fearless love makes immigrants (and U.S. citizens) cross social and spiritual borders. Pray with him for a just peace in Iraq and all around this shrinking globe.
Calling All Peacemakers
The Bible is filled with texts that speak of peace and justice. If one were to remove all the texts related to peace and justice, the Bible would be a much smaller book. This became clearly evident to me when I read through the three-year cycle of lectionary texts for the Christian calendar. The "Old and New" Testaments (Hebrew and Christian scriptures) speak of a God who breaks the weapons of war, calls for economic justice, incites prophetic visions of the reign of peace, and calls for care for the poor and vulnerable in society. We read of a Christ who shows the way of nonviolence and nonretaliation, engages in active peacemaking, transgresses social boundaries, and challenges unjust structures. We experience a Spirit that empowers a community of equity, transcending race, gender, nationality and politics.<read more>
In May 2008, we looked at the idea that food and peace are linked. This is true in a number of respects: our responsibility to feed the hungry, the way in which we grow our food and its effects on our health, where we choose to get our food from, and our eating habits and dietary choices. In part 1 of this series on food (May 2008) we considered our responsibility to feed those who are hungry. This month we will look at how the ways we grow our food can affect our health, particularly with respect to meat and related foods such as eggs.<read more>
This month's prayer for peace comes from Byron Rempel-Burkholder.<read more>