The global Anabaptist church will observe Peace Sunday together Sept. 24, 2017. Worship and resource material suggestions are posted on the Mennonite World Conference website.
The theme for this year’s Peace Sunday is “A renewed peace church builds bridges.”
https://www.mwc-cmm.org/content/mwc-new-web-building-bridges-peace-sunday The theme highlights two elements, writes Andrew G. Suderman, the MWC Peace Commission secretary, in a July 2017 letter. The first element builds on Renewal 2027, a 10-year series of events commemorating the 500th anniversary of the beginnings of the Anabaptist movement. The 2017 Peace Sunday materials address the question, What does it mean to be a ‘renewed’ peace church?
“Second, in light of the rising nationalisms around the world, which separates and polarizes one from the other, we thought it would be good to explore how, in seeking to live according to our calling of being a people of peace, we counter such tendencies and look for ways to build bridges with others,” writes Suderman.
The resource material provided by MWC include sermon notes on “Christ is our peace” from Epheisans 2:11-22, stories from Anabaptist peacebuilding in Indonesia, Colombia and Zambia, prayers and object lesson suggestions.
History of MWC’s Peace Sunday
In 2006, the MWC Peace Commission established Peace Sunday for all MWC member conferences as the Sunday nearest to Sept. 21, the International Day of Peace. The International Day of Peace was established by the United Nations in 1981 and was observed for the first time in 1982. Later the UN declared that the International Day of Peace would be Sept. 21 and it would be “observed as a day of global ceasefire and non-violence” for the duration of the day.