Two new council members have been elected and one current member re-elected to the Pax Christi USA National Council.
From the at-large slate of candidates, Pax Christi USA Teacher of Peace Fr. John Rausch, glmy was elected and current council member Kimberly Mazyck was re-elected. Both will serve three-year terms.
Rausch currently lives in Stanton, Kentucky and is a Glenmary priest. He is the director of the Catholic Committee of Appalachia, where he lives and worked for over 35 years. He organized three worker-owned businesses in Central Appalachia, and taught with Coady International Institute, the Appalachian Ministries Educational Resource Center, plus organized the Mountain Management Institute to serve the business needs of Appalachian cooperatives. A strong environmentalist, he speaks out against the devastation of mountaintop removal and advocates for sustainable economic development. He writes a monthly syndicated column called “Faith and the Marketplace” that appears in diocesan newspapers.
“Pax Christi must embrace care of creation as a principal life issue,” stated Rausch. “The violence inflicted on the earth in pursuit of profit directly affects the poor of the world, from local pollution to global warming. Transnational corporations destroy cultures as they extract fossil fuels and minerals, then practice racism when they dump and bury toxic residues in poor areas populated by people of color.”
Kimberly Mazyck will begin her second three-term following her re-election. Mazyck lives in Washington, D.C. and has worked for Catholic Relief Services since 2005, where she coordinated CRS’s Africa Rising: Hope and Healing campaign before serving as the Church Relations Manager, maintaining and supporting a number of CRS’ partnerships with U.S. organizations. Before joining CRS, she spent five years in community development at First Book, a national children’s literacy organization. She worked at Human Rights Watch from 1993-1996 in the Africa division, working with a team documenting the genocide in Rwanda. She has over 17 years of experience in community outreach and advocacy specifically focused on education and human rights issues in sub-Saharan Africa.
“I am enriched by the work of Pax Christi as a powerful voice committed to the call of nonviolence,” stated Mazyck. “Pax Christi provides its members with thoughtful materials for prayer and contemplation about our role as
peacemakers … As Pax Christi advocates for peace in our world, we are devoted to the work to become an anti-racist and multicultural movement for peace and justice.”
From the regional slate of candidates, Charles (Chuck) Michaels was elected. Michaels lives in Baltmore, Maryland and has been the coordinator of Pax Christi-Baltimore since the chapter was founded. He has been on the regional council for Pax Christi Metro D.C.-Baltimore) for several years and was the Justice and Peace Coordinator of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. Michaels has been a member of Witness for Peace and a member of the ACLU and the National Lawyers Guild.
“For Pax Christi USA, I would like to see more emphasis in reaching out to parishes and Catholic high schools all around the country,” said Michaels. “We need to get more parishioners involved, and to say to them that you don’t need to do everything at once, that any step you take toward living peace and working for peace is welcomed.”
The new council members will begin their terms at the summer 2013 council meeting following the Pax Christi USA National Conference in Atlanta, Georgia, June 16th.