Acting in Faith

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Love in the belly of the beast

Note: This year Laura Magnani gave the final plenary address at the FGC Gathering. She focused her remarks on her long years working within and outside the criminal justice system, grappling with a system which she believes embodies and carries out evil.  In her talk she spoke about the power of nonviolence and love to upend both the racism out of which mass incarceration has arisen and the system itself and to find a way to a “new normal” based on transformative justice.

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Prison security system

Prison security system by Martin

The courageous many: Undoing racism as a spiritual practice

It’s been a hard summer. From the bombardment on Gaza to the refugee children on the border to Ferguson, it feels as though the world is cracking apart and oppressive policies and the militaries or police that protect them are proceeding with impunity. The consequences of the twisted systems in which we live are being exposed. People all over the world are crying out for justice and connecting their struggles.  
 
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Sarah Grimke

Sarah Grimke

Sarah Grimke

AFSC’s Meeting/Church Liaison Orientation calls

Sunday, September 21, 2014 - 3:00pm - 4:15pm

Corporation Photo, Orientation call

Members of AFSC's Corporation at last year's annual meeting.

Join AFSC’s Friends Relations team, Lucy Duncan and Madeline Schaefer, for a presentation and discussion on the new Meeting/Church Liaison program, a growing community of Quakers from around the country who are partnering with AFSC to build a powerful Spirit-led movement for social change.  

If you’ve been interested in becoming an AFSC liaison for your meeting/church, or are curious to learn more about how Quakers can partner with AFSC, please join us! 

Journal of a Traveling Friend: Young adults and Quaker institutions

Summer is Quaker travel season, a time when Yearly Meeting annual sessions and Quaker gatherings of all sorts occur one after the other, often concurrently, from the middle of May until early September.  As the AFSC Friends Relations Associate, I traveled to a total of six Quaker conferences or business sessions this summer, talking about and presenting different aspects of AFSC’s work.  Each session was imbued with its own flavor of Quaker faith and practice, heavily influenced by the unique geographical, political, and social context of its member meetings and churches. 

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YAF Conference group photo, 2014

Participants in the Young Adult Friends Conference at Pendle Hill, 2014

Work as worship: An interview with Hector Cortez

Tetiena Harley, the Friends Relations summer intern, sat down with Hector Cortez, the Deputy General Secretary, to discuss his journey to the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), and how he plans to further AFSC’s mission to be a diverse and inclusive organization.  Their conversation illuminates both the spiritual and practical dimensions of Hector’s work, work that has taken off since he started with the organization nearly one year ago.  I had the privilege of attending the “Undoing Racism” workshop as part of this new initiative, and could feel the movement for real

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Hector Cortez, Deputy General Secretary

Hector Cortez, Deputy General Secretary

Have I failed to acknowledge Palestinian violence?

Note: Mike Merryman-Lotze wishes to make clear that these are his personal views. This piece was originally published by Mondoweiss. - Lucy

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Beit Furik checkpoint Nablus Gaza solidarity

Beit Furik checkpoint Nablus Gaza solidarity

Beit Furik checkpoint Nablus Gaza solidarity

Grant us mercy: Testimonies from Gaza

Note: Here are three testimonies of people who are experiencing the current bombardment on Gaza. - Lucy

Testimony from Mrs. Naji H. Al Jamel, a social worker at the Union of Health Work Committees in Gaza, a few minutes before her house was shelled and destroyed in the Jabalia Refugee Camp

My husband and I were woken by our neighbors’ screaming. I was confused but knew that something had happened. I hurried with my husband to find out more. The neighbors told us that our house was going to be bombed. We had to leave immediately.

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Boy with bicycle in Gaza

Boy with bicycle in Gaza

While bombs fall on Gaza: Resisting militarism in Israel

Note: Sahar Vardi is the Coordinator of the Israel Program in AFSC's office in East Jerusalem. She is a refuser and has been working actively to oppose the occupation of Palestinian territory and the militarization of Israeli society for years. Her post below are her reflections about the context of Israeli culture and its focus on militarism as an obstacle to peace. She asks that the international community put pressure on the Israeli government to end the occupation and the human rights abuses of Palestinians. - Lucy

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Israeli artillery attack on Gaza

Israeli artillery attack on Gaza

I refuse: A young Israeli resists

Udi Segal, a 19 year old Israeli, refused his mandatory military service on July 28 and was sentenced to 20 days in prison. Especially now, as Israel's ongoing attack on Gaza has claimed the lives of over 1,000 people, Udi's refusal to serve in an occupying force is an important act of resistance.

Unforgettable days: Fleeing the destruction of Shuja’iyah

Note: I met Firas Ramalawi in May; he handled security for the AFSC staff delegation visit and was a bright, kind guide for us all.

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Gazans flee Shuja’iyah by Basel Yazouri

Gazans flee Shuja’iyah by Basel Yazouri

Gazans flee Shuja’iyah by Basel Yazouri

Who we are

AFSC is a Quaker organization devoted to service, development, and peace programs throughout the world. Our work is based on the belief in the worth of every person, and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. Learn more

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AFSC has offices around the world. To see a complete list see the Where We Work page.

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