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Arts Vehicles for Peace and Justice and for a Change


Religious Peacemakers

“Religious Peacemakers” is a series of articles featuring Greater Cincinnati individuals who are religious and who use their faith and religious beliefs as promotors for their committed actions toward peace and justice.

The series, which features individuals of all religions/denominations, is based on the principle that all religions are spiritual, above material gains; that at their essence are teachings for peace and justice; and that they all aim at achieving an equal and better world.

Sadly it is we humans who, through our institutions, often use and hijack religions for personal and/or political power-driven and control gains, thus condoning divisiveness and violence.

As seen through their individual paths, and even though belonging to different religions and faiths, the featured individuals end up all going in the same direction and toward the same goal, that of an equal, peaceful and just world.

Will Porter’s Christian Calling Is to Fight for Justice for the Outcast, the Oppressed, the Marginalized, in Inner Cities and Where He Lives

When in his first year of college Will Porter read the book "When Helping Hurts" written by Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert and in which they address poverty, it opened his eyes to the ways injustice persists not only in... Continue Reading →

Syro-Malabar Catholicism, Sudeep Thomas’ Faith and Heritage, Naturally Dictates His Actions for a Fair and Better World

"Syro-Malabar Catholicism is part of my identity; it is my culture," says Sudeep Thomas. "All my life has been connected to it and nothing can take it away from me. It comes with me wherever I go." Born in Kerala,... Continue Reading →

Using Community Organizing, Bridge Building and a Holy Rage Against Injustice, Elizabeth Hopkins Aims for an Equal and “Beloved” Society.

"For me, Religion represents hope, faith, love, and a belief that all beings are inherently good and worthy of love," says Elizabeth Hopkins. "It also represents the value of the oppressed and of those overlooked by society, and a holy... Continue Reading →

Through His Classroom and Public Teachings, Dana Gregory Griffith, a Buddhist, Disseminates His Own Religious Values and Those of Other Eastern Religions, Combating Intolerance and Injustice

"I was always more interested in the spiritual and mystical dimensions of religions," says Dana Gregory Griffith, "and not so much in the morality aspect that many religious institutions stress and want to enforce on their members."  "Growing up, I... Continue Reading →

Don Rucknagel’s Commitment to Peace, Non-Violence and Health Coverage for All Is Directly Linked to His Faith

"One of my priorities is health care for all," says Don Rucknagel. "I have been a member ofPhysicians for a National Health Program (PNHP) now for over 50 years and of Single Payer Action Network (SPAN) of Ohio for over... Continue Reading →

Father George Hajj, a Maronite, Always Puts His Faith into Action and Fosters Conditions to Allow Others to Become Holy Persons

"For me, social justice and faith are inseparable," says Father George Hajj, pastor of Saint Anthony of Padua Maronite church, located on Victory Parkway, in Cincinnati. "And faith without action is only echo." Hajj was born in the country of... Continue Reading →

For Aaron Bludworth, a Mormon, Discovering & Sharing the Humanity of the Invisible Other, Namely the Homeless, & Helping Wherever He Can, Is Living His Faith.

Aaron Bludworth was born in a religious family that belonged to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, also known as the Mormon Church. Both his parents were members of the church and he grew up attending services regularly,... Continue Reading →

“Good Thoughts, Good Words, Good Deeds” Has Been the Constant Motto of Bakhtavar & Fred Desai Throughout Their Life and One of the Essential Teachings of Their Zoroastrian Faith

"We were taught all of our life to think good, speak good and do good," say in unison Bakhtavar and Fred Desai, both Indian descendants of Parsi Zoroastrian priests, ancient Iranians who fled Iran after the Arab Invasion and the... Continue Reading →

A Water Spirit, Quanita Roberson Is a Healer of Trauma, an Enablor of Love and Compassion, and a Builder and Bridger of Community

"I am the promise of forgiveness and reconciliation in the world," says Quanita Roberson, "and my work is to heal trauma wherever it is, on the individual, interpersonal and organizational levels, bringing peace and building bridges between individuals and communities."... Continue Reading →

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