This year, General Convention overlaps with the Aug. 6 anniversary of the dropping of the world’s first atomic bomb on Hiroshima. And the Episcopal Peace Fellowship will do its best to remind those at convention of that event and the Episcopal Church’s historic opposition to nuclear war.
EPF asked Sunday school students and members of its 55 chapters to make origami “peace cranes” that it could take to convention “as a reminder that never again do we want to see ... a nuclear bomb,” said Jackie Lynn, executive director. “These will be placed on the tables of the House of Bishops and House of Deputies on Aug. 6,” when the church commemorates the Feast of Transfiguration.
EPF has asked Presiding Bishop Frank T. Griswold to mention the cranes in his Aug. 6 sermon; will participate in an 8 a.m. interfaith service at the Hiroshima memorial in Minneapolis’ Japanese gardens and urges those at convention to sign the Urgent Call — a five-point plan that reaffirms commitment to eliminate nuclear weapons.
EPF also will offer nonviolence training workshops at convention and present the John Nevin Sayre Award to Margaret Morgan Lawrence.
The Sayre Award is presented every three years to an Episcopalian who has demonstrated a faithful commitment to peacemaking within and beyond the Episcopal Church. EPF will present it to Lawrence at a 4 p.m. reception Aug. 2 at Gethsemane Episcopal Church, 905 Fourth Ave. Tickets cost $40.
Lawrence and her late husband, Charles, were avowed pacifists in World War II and joined EPF in 1943. After her husband died, Lawrence formed an EPF chapter that met in her home. In 1988, she was the oldest pilgrim to walk 85 miles from London to Canterbury with a pack on her back to help bring peace concerns to the Lambeth Conference. She served two terms on the EPF National Executive Council and also served on the Council of the Fellowship of Reconciliation.
The From Violence to Wholeness workshops will be offered July 31 and Aug. 6 from 1-5 p.m. at Gethsemane Episcopal Church. Cost is $10 per session. EPF also will present a nonviolence workshop from 2:45-4:15 p.m. Aug. 5 at the Episcopal Church Women’s Triennial Meeting.
The workshops model longer training retreats of the EPF, Lynn said. “The workshops really help people focus on the violence that surrounds us daily ... in our personal lives, on the streets, in the world, and helps us to learn the nonviolence principles in order to cope with it in our spiritual journey — but also in creating transformative nonviolence in our communities and in the world.”