This year, eighteen individuals were nominated to receive the Pax Christi USA 2016 Teacher of Peace Award.
Each year, Pax Christi USA honors an outstanding peacemaker in the tradition of Sr. Thea Bowman, Dan Berrigan, Cesar Chávez, Dianna Ortiz, Dorothy Day, Ray East, Bishop Gumbleton, and Pope Paul VI. This award recognizes women and men whose lives and work exemplify the theme of Pope Paul VI’s World Day of Peace message, “To reach peace, teach peace.”
“Everyone who was nominated this year was an excellent candidate and had compelling reasons to be chosen as this year’s Teacher of Peace,” stated Johnny Zokovitch, Pax Christi USA Director of Communications and a member of the Teacher of Peace nominations committee. “It’s always difficult to choose a single person when each one, in her or his own unique way, is living out the call to gospel nonviolence in witness to the peace of Christ. Each of the nominees is really a Teacher of Peace.”
The Pax Christi USA National Council, following consultation with the Nominations Committee, makes the final decision regarding this year’s Teacher of Peace. Later this week, the 2016 Pax Christi USA Teacher of Peace will be announced. This year’s recipient will receive the award at Pax Christi USA’s national gathering to be held in Linthicum, MD in August.
Following is a list of this year’s nominees (listed in alphabetical order):
- David Atwood
- Rose Marie Berger
- Fr. John Dear
- Sr. Jean Fallon
- Fr. Seamus Finn
- Martha Hennessy
- Patrick Kennelly
- Art Laffin
- Bishop Robert McElroy
- Matthew Marshall
- Jane Morrissey
- Sr. Kay O’Neill
- Sr. Jamie Phelps
- Deacon Jim Rauner
- Sr. Megan Rice
- Fr. Richard Rohr
- Bishop Peter Rosazza
- Timothy Stiven
Pax Christi USA congratulates each of the nominees and gives thanks for their work on behalf of peace with justice.
Posted in Bread for the Journey, Peacemakers, Teach Peace, Teacher of Peace
Tagged Art Laffin, Bishop Peter Rosazza, Bishop Robert McElroy, David Atwood, Deacon Jim Rauner, Jane Morrissey, John Dear SJ, Kay O'Neill, Martha Hennessy, Matthew Marshall, Megan Rice, Patrick Kennelly, Pax Christi USA, Pope Paul VI, Richard Rohr, Rose Marie Berger, Seamus Finn, Sr. Jamie Phelps, Teacher of Peace, Timothy Stiven
by Rev. Richard Rohr
If our love of God does not directly influence, and even change, how we engage in the issues of our time on this earth, I wonder what good religion is. “God talk” becomes an opaque screen in which we see only reflections of ourselves — instead of any kind of true enlightenment or Light. “Anyone who says she loves God, and hates her brother or sister, is a liar” (1 John 4:20). None of us wants to be a liar, yet the high goals of religion make deceit and denial almost inevitable for all of us. (Read Paul’s attempts to describe this paradoxical phenomenon in Rom. 7:7-25). For all o,f us, the daily question is this, “Have I even begun to love?”
Jesus said, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22:38). These two commandments mirror one another. How you love God is how you love your neighbor, and how you love your neighbor is how you love God. In one of his most famous stories, Jesus concretely illustrates this definition of “neighbor,” making a Samaritan — a foreigner — a living example of one who knows how to be neighborly, even to his own isolationist and un-neighborly religion (Luke 10:29-37). As always, Jesus’ teaching is highly subversive to both our private egos and our common cultures.
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