Churches for Middle East Peace lead events in Greater Cleveland
This is a crucial time for Middle East peace efforts. Not only does this September mark the 10th anniversary of the attacks of 9/11/01, but also Palestinians plan to go to the United Nations to request recognition as an independent state within the 1967 borders. There could not be a more opportune moment for a visit from Ambassador Warren Clark, executive director of Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP; http://www.cmep.org). Ambassador Clark will be speaking to several audiences in the Cleveland area from Sept. 15–18. His theme is "Ending Conflict in the Middle East and What You Can Do to Help."
Warren Clark is a retired career U.S. Foreign Service officer with extensive experience negotiating in the Middle East. He also served in Europe, Canada, Africa, and at the United Nations.
The following events, titled "Conflict in the Holy Land: Why Ending It is Hard and What You Can Do to Help" are free and open to the public:
- Thursday, Sept. 15, 7:00 p.m., West Shore Unitarian Church, Rocky River;
- Sunday, Sept. 18, 9:30 a.m., Church of the Saviour (Methodist), Cleveland Heights;
- Sunday, Sept. 18, 12:15 p.m., Plymouth Church UCC, Shaker Heights.
Ambassador Clark will lead an Advocacy Workshop on Saturday, Sept. 17, 9 a.m.–noon, at Trinity Cathedral (Episcopal) in downtown Cleveland. The workshop will include continental breakfast, information, training and networking with the goal to develop a strong presence in Northeast Ohio. Details and online registration for the workshop are at www.cmep.org/content/our-work, or call 216-360-0359 for more information.
Trinity Cathedral is cosponsoring the Advocacy Workshop with Canaan Fair Trade, Cleveland Peace Action, Council on American-Islamic Relations, Interfaith Peace Builders, Interfaith Council for Peace in the Middle East, Presbytery of the Western Reserve, the Global, Witness and Justice Ministries of the United Church of Christ and Disciples of Christ, and United Protestant Campus Ministries.
Churches for Middle East Peace is a coalition of 24 national denominations and organizations, including Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant traditions. The mission of the coalition is to encourage U.S. policies that actively promote a just, lasting and comprehensive resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, ensuring security, human rights and religious freedom for all the people of the region. CMEP church leaders recently urged President Obama to work with the United Nations, the European Union, Russia and others to develop "a comprehensive statement . . . that addresses all final status issues, including . . . Jerusalem . . . [as] the shared capital of both states, a just resolution to the issue of all refugees, and assured access for all faiths to their holy places."
Mary Ann Kerr is a longtime resident of Cleveland Heights and a member of the leadership council of Churches for Middle East Peace. She can be reached at email@example.com or 216-371-1855.