Contact NCC News Service: 212-870-2228  |  E-mail   |  Most Recent Stories   |  NCC Home

Study Guide challenges congregations to consider just peace

New York, June 20, 2011 -- An adaptation of an ecumenical study paper on war is now available as a study guide for congregations.


The guide, "Christian Understanding of War in an Age of Terror(ism)," is based on a paper developed for the 2011 Ecumenical Centennial Gathering of the National Council of Churches and Church World Service held in November in New Orleans.


"What was clear from the gathering was that this is a conversation that couldnít just be held in New Orleans alone," said Jordan Blevins, Ecumenical Peace Coordinator for the NCC. "We had to create a way for this conversation to happen in every congregation open to it."


The paper, with study guide attached, is available for download at:


Through a writing team consisting of Kathleen Kern of Mennonite Church, USA, Liz Bidgood-Enders of the Church of the Brethren, Scott Thayer of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), and Rachel Stacy of the Religious Society of Friends, a four-part congregational study guide was added to provide congregations with a tool for engaging the paper.


The introduction to the study guide stresses the need for churches to continue the conversation about war and a just peace, "that we, as the church, continue to talk with one another about what it means to witness to Christís peace to our world. That we might ground ourselves in the historical conversations, understand where the ecumenical conversation among the churches is now, and seek direction for where the church ecumenical is headed."


The original paper was one of five studies included in the agenda of the ecumenical gathering in New Orleans. 


Christian Understanding of Unity in an Age of Radical Diversity

Christian Understanding of Mission in an Age of Interfaith Relations

Christian Understanding of Creation in an Age of Environmental Crisis

Christian Understanding of the Economy in an Age of Growing Inequality


These papers are study documents, not position papers. In their assessments of the past, acknowledgement of the present, and vision of the future, each paper in the series seeks to draw on the common heritage which Christians and their churches share found in scripture and tradition. 

Since its founding in 1950, the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA has been the leading force for shared ecumenical witness among Christians in the United States. The NCC's 37 member communions -- from a wide spectrum of Protestant, Anglican, Orthodox, Evangelical, historic African American and Living Peace churches -- include 45 million persons in more than 100,000 local congregations in communities across the nation.

NCC News contact:  Philip E. Jenks, 212-870-2228 (office), 646-853-4212 (cell),


NCC Home Page