by Johnny Zokovitch, Director of National Field Operations
This past weekend, I had the pleasure of joining members of Pax Christi Metro New York for their Fall Assembly in Yonkers, New York. Over 65 members gathered to hear author and activist, Tom Cordaro, a Pax Christi USA Ambassador of Peace, speak on his book, Be Not Afraid: An Alternative to the War on Terror.
The day-long event included presentations, reports from local groups, brainstorming on next steps for the region, prayer, and more. One particular joy of attending events like these for me personally is hearing about the vibrant activity of Pax Christi local groups as they witness to peace and justice in their local communities. Here is a sample of what was shared during local group reports:
- PC-Downtown Brooklyn members have been studying Tom Cordaro’s book and engaging others in the diocese through letters to the editor published in The Tablet, the diocesan newspaper
- Hudson Valley PC has hosted a Peace Mass, offered programs at area high schools on human rights and the environment, and brought food to Occupy Wall Street protesters
- PC Maryknoll celebrates their tenth anniversary this year, and they have been active in offering the Alternatives to Violence program in prisons and high schools
- PC Queens has been hosting and participating in “interfaith walks,” experiencing different houses of worship with practitioners of various faith traditions
- Other local groups have hosted screenings of The Forgotten Bomb and the new movie on Franz Jaegerstaetter, letter writing campaigns on various issues, interfaith potluck dinners, International Day of Peace actions and more…
Many thanks to Rosemarie Pace and the members of Pax Christi Metro New York for inviting me to join them, the Sisters of Charity for hosting the assembly in Yonkers, Fr. Perry and his staff at Our Lady of Refuge in Brooklyn for providing me with hospitality, Jim Kelly for driving me around, and the Sisters of Mercy for hosting me for dinner on my arrival last Friday.