Peace & Justice

Thoughts for Peace and Justice

A Visit to Red Lake, Minnesota

Painted at Red Lake, MN by Turtle Mountain, ND by artist Ken Allery, August 1988. Click here for the story.

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The Pencil: A Reflection for Christmas 2004

Known as a time for giving, Christmas is the perfect time to contemplate compassion, the Christian life, and social justice.

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Haiti in Focus

All hands on deck for the children in need. See articles, initiatives, and actions you can take.

Click here

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Our World at Night

It truly is an underrated gift — seeing the earth and its people winddown to end a long, eventful day. Luckily for us, the advances of science and technology now allow for regular folks like you and me to get a glimpse of our world at night.

See It Here

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Reminiscence About Paul and Sheila Wellstone

A truly impassioned, hardworking pair who fought for justice and peace — the Wellstone's have always been great inspirations for service and compassion.

Read My Reflection here

Reflecting on 9-11

"Every person in the United States should visit ground zero. Then they would see for themselves the horror of war and being against the bombing of Afghanistan."
Anonymous New York City firefighter after September 11, 2001

The photos of the World Trade Center were casual tourist photos taken by Dick Bernard at the end of June 1972. At the time, one of the Twin Towers had just opened and the second was just months from completion (note the construction equipment on the roof). No one could possibly have imagined September 11, 2001.

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Three Voices From the Past

George Santayana

He was seen at the entrance to Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in Poland.

"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."

Rev. Martin Niemoller
Hermann Goering

Stories for Peace

Small Things, Big Difference

Thanks to Betsy for her remembering this story.
P&J #41

On a peaceful morning after a night of storms, I sat on the shore of the ocean observing a young man on an obvious mission. Every few yards I saw him bend down, pick something up, and throw it into the water. I moved closer to him, seeing that it was starfish that he was tossing into the sea. After more than an hour, I went to the young man and asked him what possible good he could be doing.

There are thousands of miles of shoreline and millions of starfish stranded on the beaches. 'How much of a difference could you possibly be making?' was my question to him. His reply was not immediate. He paused, bent down to rescue yet another starfish, threw it into the sea, and replied thoughtfully, 'I made a difference to that one'.

An American Indian Story

With gratitude to John, from P&J #35

An old grandfather said to his grandson who came into him with anger at a friend who had done him an injustice, “Let me tell you a story,

“I, too, at times, have felt a great hate for those who have taken so much with no sorrow for what they do; but hate wears you down and does not hurt your enemy, It is like taking poison and wishing your enemy would die. I have struggled with these feelings many times.”

He continued, “It is as if there are two wolves inside me; one is good and does no harm. He lives in harmony with all around him and does not take offense when no offense was intended. He will only fight when it is right to do so and in the right way.

“But...the other wolf...Ah! The littlest thing will send him into a fit of temper. He fights everyone, all of the time, for no reason. He cannot think because his anger and hate are so great. It is helpless anger, for his anger will change nothing.

“Sometimes it is hard to live with these two wolves inside me, for both of them try to dominate my spirit.”

The boy looked intently into his grandfather's eyes and asked,

“Which one wins, Grandfather?”

The grandfather smiled and quietly said,

“The one I feed.”