International Fellowship of Reconciliation
Take a consistent stance against war and its preparation; formulate a vision of the human community based upon the belief that love in action has the power to transform unjust political, social, and economic structures; overcome the division of nation-states which are often the source of conflict and violence; resolve conflicts through nonviolent means; dismantle systems that foster fear and hatred; seek justice as a basis for peace; co-ordinate communication among IFOR members; link branches to capacity-building resources; help co-ordinate international campaigns, delegations and urgent actions; regularly participate in conferences and meetings of UN bodies through representatives, providing testimony and expertise from different regional perspectives; promote non-violent alternatives in the fields of human rights, development, and disarmament.
1914 Opposing the Great War. People of conscience from throughout Europe gathered in the city of Constance, Germany to express their opposition to the impending world war. British Quaker Henry Hodgkin, and German protestant Friedrich Sigmund-Schultze make a commitment in Cologne that while their countries may be at war with each other, “We are one in Christ and can never be at war.” The Fellowship of Reconciliation is established in Britain and Versöhnungsbund in Germany in the midst of war, inspiring similar Christian pacifist groups in the Netherlands, Sweden, the USA, Denmark and Germany. 600 British FOR members are sent to prison for refusing military service, while the founder of the FOR/Germany is sentenced to death for organizing aid for British prisoners of war.
- Interfaith Cooperation
Religion has played a central role in fomenting conflict but can also be a source of inspiration and leadership for peace. IFOR has long valued the role that faith can and has played in movements for a more peaceful and just world. IFOR understands itself as an interfaith or multi-faith community. Many branches within IFOR began among people of the same faith tradition, just as the global movement began and spread primarily among Christians. However, the global movement has long welcomed people of all faiths and recognizes that people can be motivated to live lives committed to nonviolence by convictions not identified with religion and not often described as faith. IFOR members seek to expand their inclusion and cooperation with a diversity of traditions. IFOR members sponsor interfaith delegations to areas of conflict and publish material on nonviolence from different religious traditions. The IFOR community condemns violence against religious minorities and seeks to expand understandings of tolerance and cooperation within faith traditions.
Main Focus Countries of Activities