From the History of ISSUES: Peace is Not a Four Letter Word

September 7, 1982:

In many ways the 1979 General Convention appeared to be a turning point in the life of the Episcopal Church on the issue of war and peace. A resolution was passed opposing “peacetime conscription of any form of compulsory national service.” The Lambeth Conference statement on “War and Violence” was adopted as a statement of the Episcopal Church. A Joint Commission on Peace, proposed by the Episcopal Peace Fellowship and supported by the Urban Caucus and others, was created and funded….

[But opposing] a peacetime draft when one does not yet exist, adopting a statement written in England, and appointing a committee to study the issue, have left the status quo undisturbed…

[as] in 1979, the temptation will be to pass resolutions for peace and leave the status quo unchanged. Charting a new course need not cost a lot of money, but it does involve redirecting commitment. For Episcopalians who have grown comfortable in their worship of military idols, this could be too much change to expect.

- Nathaniel W. Pierce


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