NYYM Minute on the Gospel of Peace

approved July 27, 2002

The Religious Society of Friends of New York Yearly Meeting (Quakers) gathered the last week of July 2002 with the theme “Conflict as an Opportunity for Spiritual Growth.” We know that vengeance, war and all forms of violence inhibit such growth.

The gospel of Jesus is a gospel of peace. No one who hears this message and follows it can be led to war. The “war against terrorism” like all wars is a failure to follow this teaching.

The gospel of Jesus is also one of forgiveness and reconciliation. The horrific acts of September 11th made many feel anger, but we must not allow such feelings to direct us into acts of destruction and further death.

While forgiveness and reconciliation are often difficult, they are imperative for peace to prevail.

In this Spirit, we call upon our government

  • to refrain from war, and in particular to abandon the planned invasion of Iraq.
  • to redirect resources away from instruments of death and destruction toward peace-building work and toward humanitarian, educational and reconstruction assistance in Afghanistan and other devastated or impoverished areas.