Acting in Faith

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By Madeline Schaefer
Published: August 19, 2014

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. ...

By Tetiena Harley
Published: August 13, 2014

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...

By Mike Merryman-Lotze
Published: August 12, 2014

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

As I have written and spoken about what is happening in Gaza over the last month, a number of people have criticized me by saying that I am taking a one-sided position on Israel and Palestine and that I am not acknowledging Palestinian violence. I have seen the same...

By Lucy Duncan
Published: July 31, 2014

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.

I stopped and...

By Sahar Vardi
Published: July 30, 2014

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

While the bombs fall on Gaza and the majority of...