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South African Anglican bishop and theologian
7 October 1931 – 26 December 2021
 
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LET US WORK TO BE PEACEMAKERS
A Reflection from the Interpath Traditions
by Thomas P. Bonacci, C.P.
 
On December 26, 2021, a woman swept the street in front of her neighbor’s house. This very kind gesture marked a rather solemn and sad occasion. Her neighbor was Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Unfortunately, he passed from this life at the age of ninety. Desmond Tutu was one of the key players in overcoming the apartheid government in South Africa. His cry for justice resounded throughout the World. He consulted with Popes, danced with the Dali Lama, engaged governmental leaders, played with the children, and worked for the human rights of all peoples. The World is a better place because of the life and work of this beautiful man of God.
 
This man knew the hardships of hatred and oppression. But, like the great spiritual masters of old, Desmond Tutu reached deep into his soul and found peace and serenity of heart. His laughter was contagious, and all who met him laughed with him. He was a man not afraid of life, and he lived his life with generosity and integrity. He once said:
 
My humanity is bound up in yours,
for we can only be human together.
 
Archbishop Tutu traveled the World not only to bring the love of Jesus to others but to discover in others the dignity of what it truly means to be a human being. What we have in common is no less than our humanity. 
 
Like his kind neighbor, Archbishop Tutu swept the debris of prejudice and hatred from the streets of our lives. He advocated for the full human rights of women and the LGBTQA+ Community. His Ecumenism was practical, and his Interfaith love and understanding were exemplary. The Ecumenical / Interfaith Communities of the World would do well to follow the example of his life and person. In his December 11, 1984, Nobel Lecture, the Archbishop insightfully declared: “God created us for fellowship. God created us so that we should form the human family, existing together because we were made for one another. We are not made for an exclusive self-sufficiency but for interdependence, and we break the law of our being at our peril.”
 
Indeed, we need one another. As we begin a New Year, we are inspired by the example of this great Bishop who served humankind with his humor, goodwill, humility, and prophetic courage. We need to stand up for what is right and just. The quest for peace necessitates the pursuit of justice, recognizing the rights and dignity of all peoples.
 
May the memory of his life bless you this New Year. Thank you, Holy Friends, for all the times you followed his example in your own pursuit of justice. May we realize our need for one another as together we strive to make the World a better place. 
 
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Notice
 
As things begin to return to a new normal, we at The Interfaith Peace Project are here for you in any way that you need us. The Antioch Center is now open to fully vaccinated people on Wednesdays, from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm. We are vigilant and will adjust to any and all recommendations from the state and county. We will continue our work through Zoom as we add in person programs. If you would like to schedule an in person or Zoom program or would like a phone appointment with any of us, give us a call. You may call or email Tom at:
 
Tom Bonacci
925-787- 9279