Come Celebrate with Us!

2017 is Pacem in Terris’s 50th Anniversary. That this is important goes beyond the mere longevity of a wonderful organization and a testimony to all its past leaders, staff, volunteers and members. It points to one of the core truths of social activism, peace-building and change. To successfully bring about the changes we want to see in our communities, country and world, we need not just passion, commitment, action, intelligent and compassionate alternatives to current policies and programs, and organization— we also need persistence. We won’t always succeed on the first try. We need to be involved for the long-haul. 50 years is certainly a good deal of time, but for some of the changes we are working for, 50 years is not enough.

Buckminster Fuller used to say that everything has its own gestation rate. A human babe takes 9 months, an elephant 18 months; a new car runs about 4 to 5 years, a new generation of microchips about 18 to 24. And peace in our neighborhoods, achieving economic justice, eliminating institutional racism— and peace in the Mideast and the rest of the world— is not going to be a quick fix.

Pacem’s 50th Anniversary is a benchmark we can all celebrate, as well as use as an inspiration and lesson for what it will take for us to make the world we want real. The set of activities we have put together for our 50th, under the guiding rubric of 100 Years of Peace and Justice, is our attempt to provide perspective and lessons from the last 50 years and inspiration and guidance for the next 50.

Your participation in and support of the last 50 years—and the next 50, is not only greatly appreciated, it was and will continue to be essential for Pacem in Terris’s continuing work.

50th Anniversary Events

100 Years of Peace and Justice
Pacem in Terris will be using its 50th anniversary to not only look to past accomplishments, but as a platform for looking to the future. We are calling this yearlong series 100 Years of Peace and Justice. Part of this yearlong celebration will be a series of speakers— one per month from January through May, then a pause for the summer months, and a resumption in September through November.  The talks will be near the end of the month, starting off in January, and will be in Wilmington, Delaware.

The speakers in the 100 Years of Peace and Justice series will address the major peace and justice related issues of the last 50 years (what society has accomplished), and look forward to what needs to be accomplished in the next 50— and how they think we might be able to do this. They will do this through the lens of their work— be that restorative justice, non-violence, international peace, nuclear weapons, refugees and other topics.

The series begins Tuesday evening, January 31, 2017 with Ashley Biden, Executive Director of the Delaware Center for Justice. The program will be at Theater N in downtown Wilmington, Delaware.

Next, on February 28 is George Lakey, whose latest book is Viking Economics. Other speakers include Rainer Braun, David HartsoughWilliam Frelic, John Bonifaz and others.

Speakers bios:

January 31: Ashley Biden
Ashley Biden previously served as Associate Executive Director at the Delaware Center for Justice for two years before being appointed as Executive Director. Ashley spent five years working with the Delaware Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families in the Education Unit as the Education and Career Liaison for the Department. Prior to working with the State, she worked at West End Neighborhood House Life Lines Program with youth aging out of foster care and spent four years working at a children’s mental health clinic- Northwestern Human Services Children’s Reach Clinic-in Kensington, Pennsylvania as a clinical support staff member. She received her MSW at the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Policy and Practice and received a BA in Cultural Anthropology for Tulane University.


February 28: George Lakey
George Lakey recently retired from Swarthmore College where he was Eugene M. Lang Visiting Professor for Issues in Social Change and where he managed the Global Nonviolent Action Database research project (nvdatabase.swarthmore.edu). His latest book is Viking Economics. Each of his other nine books has been about change and how to get it. He received the Martin Luther King, Jr., Peace Award, the Paul Robeson Social Justice Award, the Ashley Montague Conflict Resolution Award, and was named the Peace Educator of the Year in 2010.  His first arrest was for a civil rights sit-in, and recently walked 200 miles to protest mountaintop removal coal mining in Appalachia. He has founded a number of social change organizations including Training for Change and, most recently, Earth Quaker Action Team (EQAT.org).

March 24: Rainer Braun
Reiner Braun has been actively involved in the peace movement, working in the office of the “Krefelder Appeal” against new nuclear weapons in Europe. Since 1983 he was Executive Director for Scientist for Peace and Sustainability (Germany) and since 1991 also of the International Network of Engineers and Scientists for Global Responsibility (INES).

Since 2004 he has been working for various projects at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin and for the Max Planck Society. Since 2006 he is the Executive Director of  German IALANA Germany, the international IALANA. He worked from 2006 till 2012 as Executive Director for the Vereinigung Deutscher Wissenschaftler (VDW), the German pugwash group. Since September 2013 he is Co-president of the International Peace Bureau. He was one of the main organizer of the world congress of IPB September/October 2016 Disarm for a Climate of Peace. For many years he has been the speaker of the German peace movement, often engaged in the campaign against the U.S. Airbase in Ramstein and against NATO. He is author of several books, “Einstein and Peace“ and a biography about the Peace Nobel Laureate Joseph Rotblat.

April 25: David Hartsough
David Hartsough is an anti-war activist, co-founder of the Nonviolent Peaceforce, and an initiator of the World Beyond War movement. He is a Quaker and has a BA from Howard University and an MA in International Relations from Colombia University. Hartsough has been actively working locally and internationally for nonviolent social change and peaceful resolution of conflicts since he met Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1956.  In 1961 Hartsough participated in sit-ins aimed at pressuring shop owners in Arlington, Virginia to desegregate their lunch counters. Over the next several decades, Hartsough joined a variety of peace efforts in such far-flung locations as the Soviet Union, El Salvador, Mexico, and Kosovo. Hartsough made headlines in 1987 when he and S. Brian Willson knelt on the train tracks near the Concord Naval Weapons Station (in California) in an attempt to block a munitions-laden locomotive from transporting its cargo to Central America.

May 30: John Bonifaz
John C. Bonifaz is a Boston-based attorney and political activist specializing in constitutional law and voting rights. He is the President and co-founder of Free Speech for People.  He is also the founder of the National Voting Rights Institute and a former candidate for Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth. He is currently a board member at the Access Strategies Fund, a Massachusetts foundation promoting electoral reforms to increase the participation of underserved communities in politics.  In 1999, he received a MacArthur Fellowship, popularly known as the "genius award." He is a graduate of Brown University in 1987 and Harvard Law School cum laude— and a former Intern at Pacem in Terris.

September 19: Bill Frelick
Bill Frelick is Director, Refugee Rights Program at Human Rights Watch. He monitors, investigates, and documents human rights abuses against refugees, asylum seekers, and internally displaced persons, and advocates for the rights and humanitarian needs of all categories of forcibly displaced persons around the world.  Before joining Human Rights Watch, Frelick directed Amnesty International USA's refugee program and the US Committee for Refugees (USCR), which he served for 18 years. He was the editor of USCR's annual World Refugee Survey and monthly Refugee Reports. Frelick has traveled to refugee sites throughout the world and is widely published. He taught in the Middle East from 1979-1983 and was co-coordinator of the Asian Center of Clergy and Laity Concerned from 1976-1979. Frelick has a B.A. from Oberlin College and an M.A. from Columbia University.

50 Years of Peace and Justice in Film

What are the best films of the last 50 years that have dealt with peace and justice issues?
Help us put this list together by picking your top peace and justice films of the last 50 years. Download this form peace-film-ballot, fill it out, and send it back to us.
From your “Top 5” lists we will tabulate the ones that receive the most mentions. This will form the basis of the Pacem Film Festival.

Dates: July 2017 - August 2017
Every Tuesday evening for 6 weeks
Venue: Theater N

Join us on October 19 at The Waterfall for a wonderful evening of friendship, joy and celebration. Visit with old and new Pacem friends, see a history of Pacem's initiatives and accomplishments, and hear an amazing speaker. Stay tuned for more details!