We would like to invite you, as an individual or as a group within your
congregation, to participate in developing the set of UU principles and
guidelines on peacemaking that might be the end product of the four years of
study and action. Please use your own experience, creativity, and imagination in
helping envision a set of principles and guidelines that will help UUs be
effective in creating peaceful relations at all levels.
Peacemaking does not mean simply preventing violence. It means building
connections and relationships in which the viewpoints, needs, and wishes of all
sides are understood and respected, so that harmony and trust are the
result. How can we best do this, in our personal relationships, in our
congregations, in society, and internationally?
The suggestions that you and others provide will be used in drafting a set of
principles for further congregational discussion, which in turn will be used to
develop a draft Statement of Conscience, to be reviewed and voted on at the 2009
Following are the key questions for exploration. We invite congregations or
individuals to form groups to consider these questions and develop
suggestions for principles and guidelines for peacemaking at each level. Please
share your actions and reflections with the Commission of Social Witness by
filling out the Peacemaking Comment Form. Your
comments and actions will help form the language of the Peacemaking Statement of
Conscience and inform the advocacy and witness actions of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA).
What are our peacemaking principles in personal relationships?
What are our peacemaking principles in congregations?
What are our peacemaking principles within our local, regional, and
What are our principles in peacemaking internationally?
To assist the creative process of developing UU peacemaking principles
and guidelines, following are several statements of peacemaking principles,
guidelines, and values from other sources:
As summarized by Pace e Bene.
From the UUA Board of Trustees, October 1999 (PDF, 12 pages).
From the UNESCO brochure: "Mainstreaming the culture of peace."
As defined by the United Nations, the Culture of Peace is a set of values, attitudes, modes of behavior and ways
of life that reject violence and prevent conflicts by tackling their root causes
to solve problems through dialogue and negotiation among individuals, groups and
nations (UN Resolutions A/RES/52/13: Culture of Peace and A/RES/53/243,
Declaration and Programme of Action on a Culture of Peace).
For peace and non-violence to prevail, we need to:
Excerpted from "A Statement on Peace, War, and Military Service, 1937"—Resolutions adopted by the Mennonite General Conference at Turner, Oregon, August 1937.
This is a summary of the Just War perspective as defined by the Roman Catholic Church.
Excerpt from "The Church's Teachings on War and Peace" by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Thirty years ago Pope John XXIII laid out a visionary framework
for peace in his encyclical letter Pacem in Terris (Peace on Earth). Pacem in Terris proposed a political order in service of the common good,
defined in terms of the defense and promotion of human rights. In a prophetic
insight, anticipating the globalization of our problems, Pope John called
for new forms of political authority adequate to satisfy the needs of the
universal common good.
His vision included three major elements:
"[It] must not be forgotten that at the root of war there are usually real and serious
grievances: injustices suffered, legitimate aspirations frustrated, poverty and
the exploitation of multitudes of desperate people who see no real possibility
of improving their lot by peaceful means."
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Last updated on Friday, May 3, 2013.
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