Remembrance for Peace

It’s less than a month until the centenary of Armistice Day, marking the end of the First World War.

During this period, Central England Quakers will be remembering all those who suffered in that war – soldiers on both sides, bereaved families, civilians who were killed or injured, conscientious objectors, ambulance crews and releif workers.  We similarly rember all those affected by wars around the world.  We believe that the best way to honour them is to say ‘never again’ and work for peace in the present.

White poppies are a symbol of this rememberance for peace – they are on sale at Peace Hub (our peace & justice centre in Birmingham) and at many of our Quaker meeting houses.  If your meeting would like to order some white poppies to sell, small quantities can be collected from Peace Hub, and large quantities ordered directly from the Peace Pledge Union.

Quaker artist Caroline Jariwala has created 3 peace poppy mosaics (pictured) comissioned by our Peace Committee to help stimulate reflection and discussion on rememberance for peace.  They will be on display at Peace Hub as part of their ‘Taking a Stand‘ theme throughout November & December, and also at Carrs Lane church in the lead-up to Armistice Day.

On 11th November itself, we are holding a meeting for worship in the grounds of St Philip’s Cathedral, Birmingham where the mosaics will be on display as a focus for reflection on peace.  The meeting for worship will be held from 2:30pm to 3:30pm and we hope that Quakers and members of the public will join us for as long or short a time as they are able.

Our projects Peacemakers & Peace Hub are working together to run some Junior Peacemakers workshops on this theme. Entitled ‘Thinking about WW1 – Choices Then and Now’, the workshops are free for schools to bring 4 children (KS2) and one adult (two if required).  There are spaces for 3 schools on each day: Mon 5th Nov or Fri 9th Nov. Each day will run from 9:45 am – 2:30 pm and be held at Peace Hub.

Quaker Peace & Social Witness have also produced resources that you can use for sparking conversations about peace and challenging militarism, including a new poster by artist Abbey Thornton.