The 2008 Peacemaking Colloquium
"Gun Violence and Gospel Values"
DATE: Monday, September 15 to Wednesday, September 17, 2008
TIME: lunch to lunch
LOCATION: Stony Point Center
17 Crickettown Road
Stony Point, NY 10980
Register now! (PDF)
Gun violence has reached devastating proportions in the United States. The total collected numbers for 2005 reveal that 30,694 people, among them 3,006 children and youth, were killed by firearms in the United States, according to recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Responding to this urgent reality, the 2008 Peacemaking Colloquium at Stony Point Center will focus on the theme of "Gun Violence and Gospel Values," from Monday, September 15th through Wednesday the 17th at Stony Point Center, 35 miles north of New York City. Participants will learn comprehensively about various facets of "gun violence" and explore ways in which the faith community can respond and live out "Gospel values" that bring peace where there is violence or its aftermath.
In the words of the Rev. Catherine Snyder, Presbyterian campus minister at Virginia Tech: "Sixteen months after the Virginia Tech tragedy, I still do not have words to begin to describe the suffering that one man with two guns wreaked in our community. The body of Christ is called to prevent such suffering. I believe this conference will bring us much-needed knowledge and wisdom, so that we can become better disciples of the Prince of Peace in a nation that so easily accepts more than 30,000 gun deaths a year."
The conference will feature keynotes by Garen Wintemute from the Violence Prevention Research Program at University of California Davis Medical Center, and Thomas Diaz, Senior Analyst of the Violence Policy Center, Washington, DC. The large group sessions will be augmented by workshops led by experts and community leaders including Josh Horwitz, Adan Mairena, Deb Milcarek, Jerry Bonavia, Bob Ricker, Pat Gleich, Frida Berrigan and more. The Biblical and theological reflection will be provided by Jim Atwood and Catherine Snyder, and the preacher for the worship services will be Gayle Griffin, Assistant Superintendent of Newark, NJ, Public Schools, who deals with gun violence among young people on daily basis. During the "Open Space" process, any participant can initiate and lead a workshop on an aspect of the theme not already being presented. Part of the program will focus on concrete action plans to follow up on the conference.
This conference is timely. The most recent General Assembly of the PC(USA) approved a two-year study of gun violence. Papers presented at this conference will be read by the study team currently being selected.
There is still time to register for the conference, and scholarships are available with priority given to students. For more information including the brochure and registration form, please check The Peacemaking Colloquium at Stony Point Center, an annual gathering since 2004, is co-sponsored by various units within the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) including the Advisory Committee on Social Witness Policy, Presbyterian Peacemaking Program, Presbyterian United Nations Office, as well as the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship and Stony Point Center. All are welcome.