A Special Message from Allie Perry
Interfaith Peace-Builders Board of Directors
Inspired, energized, determined, steadfast. These words capture how I feel after co-leading a recent Interfaith Peace-Builders' delegation to Palestine/Israel. These words, and others . . . courageous, tenacious, visionary . . . capture the spirit and witness of those we met.
It was an extraordinary two weeks that broke my heart with the injustice, filled my heart with hope, and reaffirmed for me the importance and imperative of IFPB’s work.
As my own delegation experience illustrates, IFPB is at the forefront of an effort to bring the power of the Civil Rights Movement to bear on peace-building in Israel/Palestine. This is powerful, important work and it deserves our utmost support.
I invite you to consider a year-end gift to maintain this work. Could you make a financial commitment today at a level that is meaningful to you?
The delegation I co-led this autumn was a partnership between Interfaith Peace-Builders and the Dorothy Cotton Institute (DCI). This interracial and interfaith delegation included the participation of several prominent Civil Rights leaders, in addition to academics, clergy, and younger human rights activists. Among the Civil Rights elders were Dorothy Cotton, a member of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s executive staff, and Vincent Harding, author of Dr. King's famous Beyond Vietnam speech, delivered April 4, 1967 at Riverside Church in New York.
We sang our way through our journey (see Dorothy Cotton leading us in the photo above). The US Civil Rights Movement was, as Dorothy reminded us, a singing movement.
The road to liberation from the Israeli occupation is long, as it was for the freedom movement in the United States. Our presence energized and encouraged those with whom we met. The singing buoyed their spirits as well as ours.
This Civil and Human Rights Delegation is just one example of the important leadership role Interfaith Peace-Builders has taken:
- The delegation recently released a Statement to President Obama calling for an end to the siege on the Gaza Strip.
- IFPB delegates of African heritage penned an open letter to Stevie Wonder, which garnered nearly 800 signatures.
- Delegates form IFPB's recent trip to the Gaza Strip have reached thousands through media appearances nationwide.
Of course, it is not only Civil Rights icons that are engaging in this liberating work. IFPB is helping many understand the reality of Palestine/Israel, find their voice, and work for real structural change.
In October and November 2012, 82 people traveled with IFPB, swelling the total number of our delegates to more than 800. For each of these individuals the experience has been transformative. All have benefited, on their return, from IFPB’s Education and Advocacy Program, and all are equipped now to work skillfully for peace and justice on this issue.
When I joined the Board of Interfaith Peace-Builders three years ago, I knew I was joining the leadership of an organization that thought through issues meticulously and approached its work strategically. I now know and appreciate just how generative, deeply rooted, and profound the work of IFPB is. “Like a tree planted by the water, we shall not be moved.”
Our delegates, and all our supporters, are the ones that nourish the roots that support and sustain the work of IFPB. Your contributions are the lifeblood of IFPB.
I urge you to give as generously as you are able in response to this appeal.
“We are building up a new world… builders must be strong.”
Thank you for your support and solidarity,
Chair, IFPB Fundraising Committee
(Photo with Daoud Nassar at the Tent of Nations)
PS: Every gift makes a difference and contributes to the strength and vitality of IFPB’s work over the long haul and, in time, to our success. Thank you for being participants in this movement of building up a new world. Be strong . . . we will succeed!
Nothing better prepares activists to work on the conflict than eyewitness experience. Your donation will further the education and engagement of new participants and build a larger, more diverse movement! Click here to donate!