Peace House News, December 2019

Dear Friends of LIFE and The Peace House,

We Always Thank You FIRST, for all your support and gifts of love-notes tucked in with donation checks;  of calls and visits when you drive by;  all the events, communities and efforts you participate in to spread justice, peace, sufficiency, and life to ALL in the world … to people and “all our friends and relations” on the planet.

The Peace Festival, November 9th, was again an annual “Love-In” with friends & issues at 60 tables in the Civic Center Hall of Mirrors.”  Young people’s groups – like the OCU “Stars on Earth” – participated this year, adding some of that “Next Generation” we love to see.  Lively sales of Fair Trade & Home-Made goods from many tables were inspiring.  Two tables offering vegan samples and bowls of hearty soup relieved visitors of “lunch” challenges. Popcorn sales were a bit light, but the aroma filled the south end of the hall.  Once again, live entertainers provided musical ambiance, including Jahruba-on-drums, Steve McLinn on gentle folk-peace songs, D.Ray Polk, and others. (Photos below).  NEXT YEAR’S Peace Festival is Saturday, November 14th (always the 2nd Saturday in November … eleven days after WE VOTE FOR A NEW GOVERNMENT!).

Monday Vigils For Earth continue to visibly lift our concerns for Mother Earth and call for “Climate Action Now!”  This MUST become a national demand through 2020 and the Nov. 3rd General Elections. Science will not wait, and future generations will not forgive, humanity’s doing too little to prevent the worst aspects of Climate Change, already visible around the world.  We are grateful at the Vigils for all who participate – weekly, or just occasionally.  They lasts 15 minutes: 12:15 to 12:30 pm, on the NW corner of Penn Ave & NW Expy by the Verizon Store, under the City clock.  NOTE: Vigils cancelled 12/23 &12/30, to resume Monday, Jan. 6.  Holiday Hiatus.

The National Geographic Documentary “From Paris to Pittsburgh” was publicly screened at OCU in September, attended by students & others.  It’s a “Must See” movie that can easily be seen on your computer, YouTube and elsewhere. Show it at your house of worship, civic club, social justice committee. It briefly refers to President Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement, then documents positive actions being taken in cities and countries around the world to mitigate & reverse global warming and climate change.

Gant Roberson, OU College Democrats Secretary, gives rousing speech at the Climate rally in September.

The Peace House Was a Major Sponsor of the Friday, Sept. 20th “Youth Climate Strike” on the east side lawn of OKC City Hall.  Six young people were the speakers, from OCU, OU & high schools. They communicated the urgency to protect future life on earth for them, as has the astonishing Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg, who says, “The world is on fire.  What will you do about it?”

Peace House Sponsored a Table at the NAACP Annual Banquet in October. The hall at the Jim Thorpe Sports History Center on N. Lincoln was packed with friends, celebrating diversity and the importance of America’s minority communities. Naturally, we’re preparing for the Martin Luther King, Jr. events and Parade on Jan.20.

Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America – Meeting in OKC, Monday, Jan. 13, 6:30 PM, 1st Unitarian Church, 600 NW 13th Street. All Welcome.

OK Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty – Regular monthly meetings are at 5:30 PM,   on the first Tuesday of the month, at the First Unitarian Church in OKC, 600 NW 13th Street.  All welcome.

CLIMATE ACTION IN 2020 – It is crucial that we all:  Do all we can in our personal lives.  Encourage voter registration, especially young people.  Remind everyone in OTHER STATES to VOTE there, because Oklahoma will likely remain … RED.

We can influence newspapers and magazines with our letters-to-the-editor.  We can return political appeals with a note that the Climate Crisis must be an issue through 2020.  We can support candidates here or elsewhere who promise to implement serious climate policies at all levels.

REMEMBER: Donald Trump, Mike Pence and US Senator Jim Inhofe have not backed off their claims that climate science is a hoax or a myth, and elected officials in their Party are voting as though this were the truth.

We celebrate ALL Oklahoma groups, historic and NEW, supporting all issues for the common good of all:  Progressive taxes ensuring people contribute their Fair Share;  civil rights and human rights for ALL;  children’s and women’s needs and protections;  criminal justice and prison reforms;  access for ALL to affordable health care and pharmaceuticals;  maintenance and expansion of America’s electrical power grid toward a “Smart Grid” that supports development of solar and wind power generation;  immigration policy reforms that are fair and just, and which terminate the abhorrent separation of children and families;  labor unions and living wages for all working people; a  foreign aid budget that includes real support for public education and immunizations for disease control;  Vitamin A for children and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM);  the United Nations Population Fund (US support recently terminated by the administration), and groups planting trees around the world.

MOST OF ALL – We celebrate YOU, whose efforts are aligned with the Peace House, founded in 1981 by the Sisters of Benedict, where Batch found a mission and career aligned with them and their values. What a legacy they leave!

May all your winter holidays – Christmas, Channukah, Kwaanza, Solstice, others – be filled with family, friends, love & renewal for the years to come.

Please donate whatever support you can manage, that we may go ON and ON.

From Nathaniel Batchelder and All of Us Involved with The Peace House

Select photos from the 2019 Fall Peace Festival:

More photos from the 2019 Fall Peace Festival.