Religious Groups Speak Out Against War with Iraq: Apr. 2003

April 12, 2003

Source: The Washington Post

On April 12, 2003 The Washington Post reported that "while thousands of raucous antiwar demonstrators marched through the streets of downtown Washington, a different kind of peace effort by a small group of Christians and Muslims was taking place in the parking lot of an aging brick church in Fairfax City... Instead of carrying placards and shouting slogans, the interfaith activists were loading 325 boxes of soap, shampoo, toothpaste, towels and other humanitarian aid into a 20-foot truck behind Northern Virginia Mennonite Church. The packages will be collected, along with others from across the country, by the Mennonite Central Committee in Akron, Pa., and then flown to Iraq to relieve refugees, organizers said... The project was as much a statement against the war as the protests, principal coordinator Hoyt Maulden said... 'We've gone to the big demonstrations in D.C. . . . but it was very unsatisfying because the way we are against the war is not the same as the way the protesters around us were against the war,' said Maulden, a member of the Mennonite church. 'A lot of the war protests downtown sometimes got vindictive and got out of hand, and that made us very uncomfortable. We are looking for a positive way to express ourselves...' From beginning to end, the effort brought pacifist Christian denominations and Muslims together, Maulden said."