Thursday, July 29, 2010
I write about doing service work from time to time. I actually don’t write about it as often as I should. It is a life choice that Jorma and I feel strongly about though. Were it not for the service work that directly affected the two of us, we might not have the Ranch today.
The world is filled with humanitarians and people who really walk the walk. Jorma and I have had the esteem pleasure of seeing service work in action with our friend Art Gish. Art Gish has been active in peace and social justice work for some fifty years, beginning with work as a conscientious objector in Europe in the late 50’s . He also worked in the Civil Rights Movement in the 60s, and has actively opposed U. S. involvement in wars since his youth. Art and his wife have been actively working with Peacemaker Teams in the Middle East since 1995. He has authored several books but one in particular that I am more familiar with is Stories of Nonviolent Peacemaking . I may not have agreed with some of the things that he stands for but I have the utmost respect for his work. He was a world renowned peacemaker and my heart is heavy today for the world’s loss. He died in a tractor accident on his farm not far from here.
I have to admit that some of my fondest memories of Art are not conversations about peace but rather the celebration of life and the opportunity to rest on Friday’s nights when we sat side by side at Shabbat services. I don’t even know if he was Jewish and it really does not matter. He honored everyone. He actually stood down an Israeli tank in the West Bank city of Hebron as Israeli bulldozers leveled a market. Like I said, I may not have agreed with everything he stood for but I think he was a modern day prophet and he never waivered from his non-violent values. He put himself on the front lines (literally). Thank you Art for your support of peace....as Jorma would say, Long May You Run My Brother...Fair Winds and Following Seas.
Posted by Vanessa Lillian at 9:20 AM
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