Marie Benner-Rhoades JPL

Since its beginnings in 1974, On Earth Peace has been a branch growing on the tree of peace and justice. The fruit of this work is the intergenerational leadership that has been growing for the past 45 years, which is visible through the Just Peace Leaders whose stories we have been proud to share with you this month! As rain sustains a tree, your support is what helps us grow and continue to support leaders in peace and justice. 

We hope hearing from the leaders OEP has supported will inspire you to support us- we hope you will feel led to share these stories with others and donate to help support future leaders in OEP. Let these stories inspire you in your own work towards building a more peaceful, just world.  

For our second June newsletter, we are excited to share the story of one of our core staff members, Marie Benner-Rhoades

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6.9 Highlights

  • On May 23, Matt Guynn provided a Congregational Peace Health Checkup for Middlebury Church of the Brethren (Middlebury, IN) with support from Anna Rodriguez.  
  • On May 18, Matt Guynn participated in the monthly Q&A session held by David Steele, General Secretary of the Church of the Brethren Mission and Ministry Board (MMB), for members of the MMB.
  • Dunker Punks Podcast #116 features On Earth Peace's Community Engagement Grants for Youth Groups.  Laura Hay interviews each of the youth who received grants through this program.
  • June 20th is World Refugee Day. Get your Refugees Are Welcome Here stickers in time! Available on the JustPeace Outfitters store
  • Dennis Duett attended National Young Adult Conference of the Church of the Brethren on behalf of OEP.
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Pinkwashing in Palestine

Image by Phoebe Pannier

Written by Annabell Knapp, Palestine Organizer


Pinkwashing is a term used to describe when a country, organization, or company uses its positive actions towards the LGBTQ community to distract from their negative actions. The Israeli government is notorious for using this as a propaganda strategy to distract from their human rights abuses that they commit against Palestinians.

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US Pride History

Photograph by Angela Weiss

Written by Kylee Lorio, LGBTQ+ Organizer


In the United States, Pride has a complicated history. Pride truly began in 1969, but the current celebration we recognize today emerged in 1970. On June 28 of 1970, thousands of people arrived outside the former Stonewall Inn, determined to march to Greenwich Village in honor of members of the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Questioning/Queer Intersex Asexual (LGBTQIA+) community that stood against police violence the year before. Each year following, the same peaceful march honoring members of the LGBTQIA+ community occurred, eventually earning the title of Pride. Since 1970, Pride has been an annual commemoration of the identity that has been the source of generations of oppression. 

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OEP Endorses Palestinian Bills

Photo by Justin Tallis

Written by Annabell Knapp, Palestine Justice Organizer


For 73 years Palestinians have been living under an oppressive apartheid state enforced by the Israeli government. This oppressive state has been funded by the United States which has only aided the human rights abuses that Palestinians face every day. This is why it is important for us in the United States to hold our government accountable for their part in committing human rights abuses against Palestinians. In the recent few weeks On Earth Peace has stepped up and has endorsed pieces of legislation and signed on to joint statements condemning the actions of the United States government in relation to Palestine.

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