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Low res Archbishop Selwanos

Syrian archbishop leaves EMU abruptly to rally his flock to return to their historic, destroyed city and rebuild their lives

Two days of arduous traveling from war-torn Syria to peaceful Harrisonburg, Virginia. Four days in a class called “PeaceTalk: English Language Skills for Peacebuilders.” Then suddenly rushing back to Syria, again navigating many difficulties to arrive at his freshly gutted church in Homs, Syria. This was the experience of Selwanos Boutros Alnemeh, a prominent Syriac Orthodox (Catholi ...More

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The Summer Peacebuilding Institute draws widely diverse people to “sit and talk outside of the conflict zone”

What started in the mid-1990s as a series of lunches where those working in the peacebuilding field could exchange ideas on theories and practice has grown into a world-renowned institute for peacebuilding and development professionals, without losing its emphasis on relationship building. The annual Summer Peacebuilding Institute (SPI) now consists of fo ...More

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“Where There Was Despair, They Saw Hope” – Summer Peacebuilding Institute 2013 Wraps Up

Many of the 196 attendees at this year’s Summer Peacebuilding Institute (SPI) had survived devastating loss and trauma. Yet the final week of that gathering at Eastern Mennonite University began with an evening of infectious joy. SPI learners – representing 43 nations over six weeks of sessions, May 6-June 14 – did line and contra dancing, ...More

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Undergrads Are Key Players in Peace Institute

For the second year in a row, college senior James Souder has a summer job that wins him friends from dozens of countries. They are men and women aged 20 to 90 who do things on behalf of peace and justice like mediate between warring soldiers and live among suffering refugees in camps. Souder is one of four 1990-born undergraduates at EMU who are “community assistants” in the ...More

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27 Nationalities at Summer Peace Institute

On the week that Bill Goldberg welcomed 67 people from 27 countries to the first session of the 2012 Summer Peacebuilding Institute (SPI), he pondered the changes he has seen since his arrival at Eastern Mennonite University (EMU) 14 years ago. “Probably 80 percent of the people wh ...More

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Goldberg, Helbert Named Co-Directors of EMU’s Summer Peacebuilding Institute

Beginning July 1, 2011, Eastern Mennonite University’s (EMU) annual Summer Peacebuilding Institute (SPI) gained two new directors, both of whom hold graduate degrees in conflict transformation – William (Bill) Goldberg,  MA ’01, and Valerie Helbert, MA ’08. Goldberg and Helbert are veteran employees of the Center for Justice and Peacebuilding, under which SPI operates. Goldberg ...More

Forum Held on Race Relations Meeting at the Table

When David Works traced his family roots back to Thomas Jefferson, he learned that some of his relatives were descendants of slaves. Works, who is white, learned that he has black cousins, and he wanted to meet them. That sent him and his family on a years-long journey of mending race relations. ...More

Peacebuilding Groups Gather From Around the World

(L. to r.): Elizabeth Nsarkoh from Wast Africa Peacebuilding Institute (WAPI); Manjrika Sewak (partially hidden) and Ameet Dhakal, both from the Asian-Pacific partnership for Peace; and Emmanuel Bombande, also of WAPI, take part in a discu ...More

EMU to Host Intercollegiate Peace Gathering

EMU will host the annual meeting of the Intercollegiate Peace Fellowship (IPF), Feb. 20-21, 2004. IPF is a rotating gathering of 150-200 students and faculty from Mennonite, Brethren, and Quaker colleges across the U.S. and Canada to discuss peace issues,” said organizer William (Bill) Goldberg of Harrisonburg. Last year’s conference was held at Bluffton (Ohio) College. ...More