the Peacebuilder



Internships with On Earth Peace


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On Earth Peace Launches Internship ProgramInternships


Juniata Workshop Pic


On Earth Peace is now providing three-month internships for college students.  The purposes of On Earth Peace internships are to advance our work, to achieve success in specific programs and initiatives, and to offer skill development and personal growth for emerging peacebuilders in a faith-based nonprofit setting, fulfilling our mission to develop leadership for peace in each generation.


Internship positions are available in a variety of our program and administrative areas.  Current listings are available at  For more information, contact Marie Benner-Rhoades. 



Visions and Dreams of Peace BuildingVisions


In 2014, On Earth Peace is celebrating its 40th anniversary!  As part of this celebration, we are collecting stories of people's visions and dreams of peace building. Through interviews, we are inviting people to share their stories of working for peace and their visions and dreams of future peace building.  In each issue of the Peacebuilder, we are sharing one of these conversations.  To submit a conversation for the Peacebuilder, please email Marie Benner-Rhoades.

In May, Shelley West shared some of her visions and dreams of peace building with Marie Benner-Rhoades. Shelley is a member of this summer's Youth Peace Travel Team.  She studies nursing at the University of Portland.  A full transcript of this interview is available at On Earth Peace's 40th anniversary blog,


Marie:  You're getting ready to go on the Youth Peace Travel Team and reflecting on how the Youth Peace Travel Team has inspired you. What is a dream or hope you have about peace that you hope to share this summer as you serve on the Youth Peace Travel Team?


Shelley:  That's a good question.  I have personal dreams of how I would like to share and build peace in my own life.  Through different classes in college recently, whether it be racial equality or any number of issues, I've been discovering how I want to build peace.  So one thing, I've learned that peace is so much more than your typical Sunday school not fighting with your brothers and sisters and not using violence, but is a much broader spectrum.  Peace is being able to interact and have equality and fairness between races or social classes, things like that.  So one dream is that, through our teaching on the Team or how they [campers] are discovering peace, the people that we're interacting with will be able to see that it is a much bigger issue and be able to pick out what speaks to them.  I don't think I'm there yet, but I'm slowly weaving my way through the injustices of the world and how there are so many tasks to pick from and identifying what speaks to me in peacebuilding.  Presenting a broader picture in hopes that whoever we're interacting with finds an issue or medium or something to get excited about, I guess that would be my dream.


Marie:  Thanks.  I think one of all of our hopes for the Youth Peace Travel Team is how you all are able to share somehow fits with youth so they are able to take whatever the next step is for them.


Shelley:  Yeah.  Definitely.


Marie:  And I hear you broadening that to say, "And I want them to have a more full or deeper understanding of what peacemaking is."  Rather than something that is just simplistic.


Shelley:  Yeah, and that's hard because you want it to be a simple enough message so that you can make a difference and take action and know what the next step is, at least immediately.  And at the same time, not simplifying it so much that they can understand that it is deep and serious and can be a really inspirational issue.  There is something for everyone in peace building and everyone's gifts can be brought to the table.  Yes, making sure there is a broader deeper understanding, but presenting it in a way that makes it seem like there is something that I can do about this.  I think that goes back to how I've been inspired by past teams, me feeling like there is something I can do about this.  That I think is the most important thing.


Marie:  Can you think of the one message that the Youth Peace Travel Team left with you that has kind of sat with you?


Shelley:  Hmmm.  I think creativity is definitely something that stuck with me.  They shared lots of different stories about how really great peace builders in the past have been really creative in their efforts and that goes back to Jesus' creativity.  In his peace building efforts, the third way - not the way of violence or complete passivity, but the third way.  So while sometimes I feel like I struggle with creativity, I realize that it is crucially important in the work of peace building and spreading the Gospel even.  So that just started to crank the motors about how can I be creative, how can I brainstorm ideas or ways I might react being put in different situations, so I think the creativity of peacebuilding is something that really stuck with me from past teams.



Introducing Our Summer InternsInterns


This summer, On Earth Peace is excited to be working with six interns! Two of our interns are Master of Divinity students at Bethany Theological Seminary.  Four of our interns are serving on this summer's Youth Peace Travel Team (a shared ministry of On Earth Peace, Outdoor Ministry Association, and the Church of the Brethren, Inc.).
Samuel Sarpiya and Karen Duhai come to us from Bethany Theological Seminary.  This summer, they will be working primarily with our Ministry of Reconciliation services.  Both Samuel and Karen will be at this summer's Church of the Brethren Annual Conference and National Youth Conference.

"On Earth Peace has been a big part of my faith journey, from first learning about its work as a youth at National Youth Conference to working with some of the staff while on the Youth Peace Travel Team.  I am excited to have the opportunity to work with On Earth Peace this summer, and to share my love for peacemaking with others in a way that may influence their faith journeys." --Karen Duhai 

"My MDiv Focus is in Conflict Transformation, spending my summer with practitioners in the Ministry of Reconciliation! What a great opportunity to learn from the practitioners. That I am excited about." --Samuel Sarpiya

This summer's Youth Peace Travel Team includes Christopher Bache, Christy Crouse, Jake Frye, and Shelley West.  They will be traveling to Church of the Brethren camps and conferences to share peacemaking skills with youth.  You can find their travel schedule here.  Their team blog can be found here.
L to R: Shelley, Chris, Jake, Christy
"I am excited for the opportunity to meet new people and to spread Jesus' radical peace to each camp." --Chris Bache

"I can't wait to grow in my knowledge of God, the world, and myself alongside those who are doing the same that we get to create friendships with this summer." --Christy Crouse

"I'm looking forward to having the opportunity to talk to so many different people about something I'm passionate about." --Jake Frye

"I am eager to discover how I can be a leader in the powerful work of educating and involving others in the work of building peace by Jesus' example." --Shelley West
A big Thank You! to our intern Angela Finet who finished her year of service with us in May.  Angela worked with our Living Peace Church ministry. 


Peace Day Staff Announcement PeaceDay


A Hearty Welcome to Elizabeth Ullery, who is joining the On Earth Peace team as Peace Day (September 21) Campaign Organizer! Elizabeth brings social media, photography and graphic design skills to our team. Her position focuses on making social media connections to recruit congregations to hold prayers for peace on September 21, and building deeper relationships with people working for peace and reconciliation. Elizabeth serves as director of church operations for the United Churches of Olympia (Washington), and she is convener of the board of directors for the Open Table Cooperative, a non-profit organization in the Church of the Brethren that seeks to continue the work of Jesus in a spirit of bold, visionary, inclusive love. We are really excited to have her on board! Please tweet her at @PeaceDayPray to connect and welcome her to the team!
Peace Day 2014: Visions and Dreams of Building Peace  
Plan a peace prayer service for September 21, 2014 
Click image to register! 

Agape-Satyagraha Training WebinarsAS


On Earth Peace will be offering a series of webinars for people interested in or actively a part of Agape-Satyagraha Training.  Webinar topics include recruiting youth and mentors, an introduction to using the curriculum, understanding and using communication skills, and Kingian nonviolence.  

The first webinar, "Preparing for the School Year: Recruiting Youth and Mentors," will be held on Monday, July 14, at 8:00pmET.  Gerald Rhoades and Marie Benner-Rhoades will lead the session.  Both have ex-
perience working with the development of new sites across the country. 
Web conference log-in information will be available in the next Peacebuilder. For more information about this series, please contact Marie Benner-Rhoades.


Volunteers NeededAC


At Annual Conference:

We are looking for volunteers who are excited about the work of On Earth Peace to represent us and share about our ministries at our Annual Conference booth.  To volunteer, please connect with us on VolunteerSpot.


Even if you are not attending Annual Conference, please share this freely with our friends and supporters #CoBAC14.


For National Youth Conference:

Are you good at creative design? Help protect kids from military recruiting. Help design and produce "Recruiting Roulette" play money for the thousands of students at National Youth Conference and beyond. The back side of each RR play money bill will have printed on it 1-out-of-20-to-30 possible outcomes for joining the military. Volunteer by the end of Annual Conference, July 6, at this page:   




On Earth Peace LogoOEP  

Committed to stopping violence and building reconciliation, On Earth Peace is an agency rooted in the Church of the Brethren. On Earth Peace extends this 300-year faith legacy by equipping new generations of Christian peacemakers and partnering with grassroots groups to build peace and justice.



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Upcoming Events

June 15-21
Youth Peace Travel Team at Camp Colorado

June 22-28
Youth Peace Travel Team at Camp Stover (Idaho)

July 2-6
Church of the Brethren Annual Conference (Columbus, Ohio)

July 6-12
Song and Story Fest
(Camp Inspiration Hills, Burbank, Ohio)

July 13-18
Youth Peace Travel Team at Camp Blue Diamond (Pa.)

July 14
Agape-Satyagraha Training Webinar, "Preparing for the School Year: Recruiting Mentors and Youth"

July 19-24
Church of the Brethren National Youth Conference
(Ft. Collins, Colorado)

July 25-27
Church of the Brethren Western Plains District Conference

July 27-31
Youth Peace Travel Team at Camp Pine Lake (Iowa)

August 2
MoR Appreciative Inquiry Facilitation for a Congregation

August 3-9
Youth Peace Travel Team at Camp Hammond Mill (Missouri)

August 9
MoR Appreciative Inquiry Facilitation for a Congregation

August 10-16
Youth Peace Travel Team at Camp Koinonia (Washington)

August 16-18
Youth Peace Travel Team Debriefing

September 4-7
McPherson College (Kan.)

September 8
Agape-Satyagraha Training Webinar, "Getting Started: An Introduction to Curriculum" 

September 13
Agape-Satyagraha Training Site Visit
Modesto, Calif.

September 15-18
On Earth Peace Staff Retreat

September 18-20
On Earth Peace Board Meets

September 21
Peace Day

September 27
Let's Get It Together!
Conflict Transformation in the Congregation & Beyond
Virlina District
Camp Bethel (VA)