When Lives Collide

I couldn’t help thinking, as she held me tight, that what goes around comes around, often in the most beautiful and unexpected ways

A week ago, Liberian Nobel Peace Prize laureate Leymah Gbowee arrived in Israel for a whirlwind two-day visit. She was invited to attend the grand finale of an event organized by Women Wage Peace, which had begun on October 4 with a group of Israeli and Palestinian women who were slowly marching from the north of the country down to Jerusalem, where they planned to hand the Prime Minister a letter demanding an end to the conflict. Their inspiration was the women’s peace movement in Liberia that had brought down that country’s dictator in 2003.  It was, therefore, in her capacity as a woman, a peace activist, and a Nobel laureate that Leymah was invited to attend this event and give the keynote addresses in a variety of settings on the final days of the march. Continue reading “When Lives Collide”

Guest Post: On Being Loved and Wanted

“Of all the inspiring, motivating individuals we learn from, I am delighted that the simplest notion of sharing the belovedness of another human being is what consistently made a sustaining impact”

Once again, it is my great privilege to hand this post over to one of the Curriculum’s most seasoned teachers. For three years in a row, Elise taught Peace Heroes to her third grade classes at the Jerusalem School in Beit Hanina. What follows are some of her reflections on this experience.

“Miss Elise, I am sick,” Aseel raised her hand to share.

“Oh really?” I responded.

“Yes,” she continued in that adorably confident way of hers. “My mom wanted me to stay home this morning but I told her I couldn’t. It’s Wednesday. We have history! And I can’t miss that.”

I just smiled, happy my little Aseel loved history so much and secretly hoping her sickness wasn’t contagious!

Although Aseel’s extreme enthusiasm for our peace history class made me smile, it didn’t surprise me. Continue reading “Guest Post: On Being Loved and Wanted”

Why This, Why Now?

How we define peace makes a difference in how we live our lives. And in the current state of global affairs, that’s not a point to be taken lightly

I’ve been asked: Why is the Peace Heroes Curriculum urgently needed right now, at this point in time? It’s a fair question. And here is my (shorthand) answer.

There is no denying that the contemporary political climate around the world is one of fear – a climate that lends itself to the many radical voices that are quickly becoming mainstream. This fear is manifested in a growing suspicion of anyone who does not belong to the factions we associate ourselves with, causing people to move more deeply into their own groups and alienating anyone who is different, or “other,” than them. In fact, the fear of the “other” is turning into something of a crisis on a global scale, Continue reading “Why This, Why Now?”

Guest Post: Joccoa and Mel on a Year With the Peace Heroes

“It soon becomes clear that no one particular type of person or characteristic is needed to be a hero for peace – any one of us can make a difference in the world”

It is my great privilege to hand this post to Mel and Joccoa, mother and daughter who have been using the Peace Heroes Curriculum in their homeschooling program for over a year now (feel free to read this blog post for more about their very creative ideas). It begins with Joccoa’s lovely poem, featured artistically in her picture above, followed by some of her thoughts, and ends with some reflections from Mel.

Continue reading “Guest Post: Joccoa and Mel on a Year With the Peace Heroes”