Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines “peace” as a state of tranquility or quiet, which includes freedom from civil disturbance, a state of security or order within a community, freedom from disquieting or oppressive thoughts or emotions, harmony in personal relations, and a state or period of mutual accord between governments. People also sometimes use the word “peace” to ask for silence or calm, or as a greeting or farewell.

       Peace, presumably, is a desired state. But current news about the ravages of war, gun violence on our streets, hate crimes in our communities, bullying in our schools, domestic violence, or child abuse in families raise serious questions about how and whether we humans might find or make peace.

So here’s a question: What if we sat down face-to-face and explored the possibilities of building peace? 

Mothers and Others for Peace, in coordination with the Oak Park Public Library, and sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Oak Park/River Forest, invite you to try.

On Friday, May 6 at 2:30 (doors open), 2:45 (welcome), and 3 p.m., Circles begin.

Stephen Jackson, restorative justice practitioner and Oak Park Public Library director of Equity and Anti-Racism, will facilitate an interactive introduction to the Circle process, a way of bringing people together to understand one another, strengthen bonds, and solve community problems. Everyone who comes on May 6 will be able to take part in a circle, and all ages are welcome.

       Mothers and Others For Peace (MOFP) is a group of local activists who work toward building a peaceful future. We are inspired by Julia Ward Howe’s 1870 rallying cry to women to stop wars after the terrible loss of life in the Civil War, and her call for women to gather together once a year on a “Mothers’ Day” to focus on ways to find peace. We work to support this message of peace in this 21st century, as we have for the past six years.

To learn more about us and our past Mothers’ Day events, go to facebook.com/MothersAndOthersForPeace. And please join us for The Circle Process: Creating Deep Conversations, Friday, May 6, 2:30-4 p.m., at the Oak Park Public Library Veterans Room, 834 Lake St., Oak Park. Registration at oppl.org/calendar is preferred for this free program.

Kathleen Perry
River Forest
Member of Mothers and Others for Peace
& League of Women Voters

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