Pax Christi

Pax Christi 'Returns to Roots'

Pax Christi International, the Brussels-based Catholic peace movement, elected a lay woman and an archbishop as co-presidents. The move to co-presidency for a position usually held by a bishop alone "returns [Pax Christi] to its roots and lifts up a model of shared leadership in the Catholic Church," according to the peace group.

Democratic Republic of the Congo's Archbishop Laurent Monsengwo and Marie Dennis, director of the Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns in Washington, D.C., will begin their three-year tenure when current president Latin Patriarch Michel Sabbah of Jerusalem completes his term. Additionally, Pax Christi International's Secretary General Etienne de Jonghe will be succeeded by Claudette Werleigh, former prime minister of Haiti.

Monsengwo has been an outspoken critic of the Kabila government in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and a leader in promoting African unity and religious tolerance. Dennis has worked extensively in Latin America and Africa. She is chair of the Religious Working Group on the World Bank and IMF and was named one of Pax Christi USA's "Ambassadors of Peace."

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Sojourners Magazine September/October 2007
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News Bites

  • Catholic Vote? The Democratic National Committee hired John Kelly, treasurer of Pax Christi USA, a national Catholic peace organization, to lead outreach to Catholic constituents.
  • PewTube. The Church of England and Britain's Methodist Church have launched a Web site that makes use of YouTube Internet video technology to promote fresh and contemporary means of worship. "You have to preach where people are listening," said a Church of England spokesperson on the project.
  • Clockwork Orange. On the fifth anniversary of the first "enemy combatant" prisoners arriving at the U.S. military's Guantanamo Bay detention center, more than 400 protesters—many wearing orange detainee jumpsuits—attempted to deliver habeas corpus motions on behalf of detainees to the U.S. Federal District Court. The protest was organized by the Christian group Witness Against Torture.
  • Mother/Soldier. More than 155,000 women have done military service in Iraq and Afghanistan. More than 16,000 of those women are single mothers, according to the Pentagon.
  • Choose Life. The parents of murder victim Emily Murray, a 20-year-old Kenyon College student who hoped to become an Episcopal priest and who was killed in 2000, are asking that her murderer's death sentence be changed to life without parole, in accordance with Emily Murray's beliefs.
  • Human rights. Lawyer Gary Haugen, founder of the Christian organization International Justice Mission, was awarded Prison Fellowship's 2007 William Wilberforce Award for IJM's work against the global slave trade and human trafficking.
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    Sojourners Magazine April 2007
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    In Memory of Her

    "Whatever the turmoil, whatever the divisions among humankind, whatever the violence, the followers of Jesus can refuse to be moved from his transcendent message of peace. May there come a time when the church, as a peace church without any ties to violence, may greet the human family with the words, ‘Peace be with you.'"
    —Eileen Egan, co-founder of Pax Christi USA, died on October 7, 2000.

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    Sojourners Magazine January-February 2001
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