Topics

Participating Congregations and Organizations
  • American Muslim Voice
  • Beyt Tikkun Synagogue
  • First Congregational Church (United Church of Christ) Palo Alto
  • First Evangelical Lutheran Church Palo Alto
  • First Presbyterian Church Palo Alto
  • First United Methodist Church Palo Alto
  • Network of Spiritual Progressives
  • Palo Alto Friends Meeting
  • St. Thomas Aquinas Parish, Palo Alto (Catholic)
  • Trinity Church in Menlo Park (Episcopal)
  • Unitarian Universalist Church of Palo Alto
  • West Bay Chapter, Buddhist Peace Fellowship

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Taking the War Out of Our Words

A four-hour workshop with Sharon Strand Ellison
Sunday, Sept. 24, 1-5pm
Unitarian Universalist Church of Palo Alto, 505 E. Charleston Road, Palo Alto
$20 donation requested; no one turned away for lack of funds

Sharon Strand Ellison is an author and communication consultant who will introduce participants to the art of powerful nondefensive communication. This is not a technique for winning arguments, but a path to verbal disarmament.

Click here to download a flyer.


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Sept. 11 Peaceful Presence: Multifaith Prayers for Peace & Justice

Mark this Day for Peace, Justice and Inclusion
Monday, September 11, 7-8pm
King Plaza (at Hamilton & Ramona) in Palo Alto

Let us join to celebrate our common humanity and shared commitment to a world of peace, justice and inclusion. Prayers, reflections, music and rituals from diverse religious traditions will call us to unity and compassion as we make a public affirmation for peace. Those of all faiths and of no formal faith are more than welcome.

At 5:30-7pm there will be a Multifaith Peace Picnic, also on King Plaza, sponsored by American Muslim Voice along with over two dozen Peace Partners, including MVPJ.  Come for that and have more opportunity to cultivate community and friendship. Our Peaceful Presence Gathering will immediately follow the picnic.

VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES: Click here to see ways you can help and sign-up for what you can do.

Visit, like and link to our Facebook Event page.

Bring a sweater or something to keep you warm, as it can get cool and breezy on the plaza!


Download 9/11 Peaceful Presence flyers and help spread the word!
Full color PDF
Fill color JPG
White background PDF (for easier printing)


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Resources for Challenging Times

We are collecting helpful resources from other organizations. 

Here are some we have found so far:

Ten Ways to Fight Hate: A Community Resource Guide - Great resource from Southern Poverty Law Center.

Do's and Don'ts for Bystander Intervention - A one page list of important guidelines from the American Friends Service Committee (a Quaker organization).


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Statement on Charlottesville

In gatherings small and large, thousands have come together around the country to honor Heather Heyer, killed by a hateful young man using his car as a weapon of terror, and to rebuke the neo-Nazis and white supremacists who brought hate and brutal assault to Charlottesville.

We at Multifaith Voices for Peace and Justice stand with those vigil attendees in their proclamation that "love wins" and in declaring that hate is not welcome here.

We also acknowledge that what happened in Charlottesville is not new, perhaps only forgotten, as our history of racial, xenophobic and anti-semitic violence runs deep in American history. Our faiths demand that we stand up, name, confront, resist and defeat evil with love and in love's name and we welcome and honor all who share the same commitment.



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URGENT ACTION: Urge Senator Harris and Congresswoman Eshoo to Cosponsor Bill to Restrict First Use of Nuclear Weapons

Urge Congress to send a strong message to the President regarding the very serious threat of the use of nuclear weapons. A long list of cosponsors have signed a bill entitled "Restricting First Use of Nuclear Weapons Act of 2017" that would deny Trump the authority to use nuclear weapons without a declaration of war by Congress.

In the House, H.R. 699 has 40 cosponsors, including Rep. Speier and Rep. Lofgren. Rep. Anna Eshoo has not yet signed on as a cosponsor. In the Senate S. 900 has 9 cosponsors, including Sen. Feinstein, but Sen. Harris has not yet added her name.

URGE Sen. Harris and Rep. Eshoo to become co-sponsors!  Call or email them today!

EMAIL Sen. Harris.
EMAIL Rep. Eshoo.


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NEW MVPJ Solidarity Team Plans in Place

Multifaith Voices for Peace & Justice (MVPJ) is setting up a process which will allow us to respond quickly with publicly visible acts of solidarity on behalf of any religious, ethnic, or other vulnerable communities in our local area which are being threatened, or which have been harmed or violated in some way.  Examples of triggers could be receipt of hate mail, defacing of property, threats to the well-being of the community or to a member of the community.   Our goal is to gather in response and public solidarity within 24-48 hours of learning about the incident. These MVPJ solidarity responses will be faithful, peaceful demonstrations of solidarity and friendship, and do not require the training necessary for the Rapid Response teams who will be possibly confronting ICE agents or raids.  Supportive, peaceful, faith-based signs may be brought by participants to these public solidarity events. 
 
When an action is needed, our email subject title will be “IMMEDIATE LOCAL RESPONSE NEEDED”, and the body of the email will include instructions as to where and when to gather.
 
If your community is targeted or threatened in some way, and you want to ask for a public show of solidarity, or simply discuss this possibility, please contact us through this email: solidarity@multifaithpeace.org. You may certainly talk with anyone on the MVPJ steering committee personally if you prefer, however the "solidarity@multifaithpeace.org" email is set up to be checked several times every day, for a quick response.
 
Multifaith Voices for Peace and Justice Non-Violent Commitment
 
In all actions that it takes, members of Multifaith Voices for Peace and Justice commit to the principles of non-violence, and pledge that all their actions will be peaceful, respectful, prayerful and non-violent.

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MVPJ Statement on Supreme Court Ruling on Muslim Ban

Multifaith Voices for Peace and Justice is gravely concerned by the recent Supreme Court decision, allowing partial reinstatement of President Trump’s Muslim ban, pending court review of the issue.  We are gratified that the Court greatly restricted the ban, by ruling that those with “bona fide relationships” with persons in the U.S. are to be admitted.  But we are deeply alarmed that, pending Court review, U.S. law now restricts entry for Muslims from the six majority-Muslim countries named in the ban.  We believe that this sets a profoundly dangerous precedent, permitting religiously based discrimination against Muslims in American immigration policy.  We share heartfelt distress with our Muslim friends and neighbors who await future court decisions in fear, and we renew our determination to object with all our might to discrimination against Muslims in our country.  If any one of us is persecuted, we all suffer as Americans, as a nation, and as a human family.  We will not stand idly by as our neighbors and friends are victimized and as our country closes its doors to people in need of refuge.

Multifaith Voices for Peace & Justice
June 29, 2017 


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Multifaith Prayers for Peace on 11th of the Month

Monthly Multifaith Prayers for Peace
7-7:30pm on 11th of every month
Monday, Sept. 11, PUBLIC GATHERING at King Plaza, City Hall in Palo Alto

In the midst of difficult times, Multifaith Voices for Peace and Justice will host “Peaceful Presence,” a monthly prayer service on the evening of the 11th of each month, offering a time of quiet multifaith prayers for peace and strength for the journey.  All are welcome: those of all faith traditions and of no defined faith, those who are suffering at the hands of their own government, those who need a pause in the midst of intensive work on behalf of others, and all who would like to pray with others for the well-being of all.  The prayer time will include elements from several religious traditions.

Upcoming:
Monday, September 11 PUBLIC PEACEFUL PRESENCE, 7-8pm at King Plaza, 250 Hamilton, Palo Alto
Wednesday, October 11, 7-7:30pm: Hosted by Baha'i Community, held at First Congregational Church, 1985 Louis Road, Palo Alto


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CAIR on SCOTUS 'Muslim Ban' Decision

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, said the recent decision by the U.S. Supreme Court allowing a limited version of the Trump administration’s “Muslim ban” executive orders to take effect ignores the Islamophobic origins of the policy and emboldens Islamophobes in the Trump administration.

Click here to read the full statement.

For a court summary and more on what the ruling means, click here.



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Statewide Call to Action!

SB 54, the California Values Act, will ban the use of state and local resources from carrying out the work of federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents in deportation actions, essentially making California a Sanctuary state. This is a huge step in standing up for immigrants and those who could become targets of the Trump administration. 

California Religious Freedom Act, SB 31, prohibits a state or local agency or public employee acting under color of the law from providing to the federal government personal information regarding a person's religious beliefs, practices or affiliation.  This bill will ensure that California does not participate in any way in a registry targeting Muslims or any other religious group. The bill is co-sponsored by the ACLU of California, Asian Americans Advancing Justice - California, and the Council on American-Islamic Relations California. Please contact your local Assemblymember and urge him/her to support SB 31.

Contact information for local Senators and Assemblymembers can be found below.


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Events
Quote of the Week

My heart is open to all the winds... Wherever God's caravans turn, the religion of love shall be my religion. And my faith.

- Ibn 'Arabi, 13th Century Sufi traveler & mystic