“Like a tree that’s planted by the water ....”

[If you wish, you may send us your donation the old-fashioned way, and send us a check. Quelle Idée!

P. O. Box 9334
Berkeley, CA 94709

The Next Living Graveyard: June 13.
[NOTE: The L.G. will be on haitus in July]
We gather in front of the Oakland Federal Building, 301 Clay Street
two blocks from 12th Street BART.

The spring 2016 issue of our newsletter, “Planted By the Water” is out: Download PDF

For those of you unable to attend our 2016 Good Friday Interfaith Service, or who wish to re-visit it:

Home page postings are archived:
2015–2016 ^ 2012–2014 ^ 2010

The vigil in front of the Oakland Federal Building is now just once a month, along with the Living Graveyard, on the 3rd Monday (on occasion the Monday will be changed. Look to the top of this webpage for the current info. Please join us! Further information

“On the Edge of Peace—
Voices from the faith-Based
Peace and Justice Community”

an anthology of poems from the
Peace & Justice community


The Strangers

No one knows why they came

to this town

in the middle of winter,

he an out-of-work builder

she large with pregnancy.

But here they are

with the clothes on their backs

two blankets

between themselves and the concrete

and the rain descending.

Here they are.

And somehow

she delivers her child

with no woman beside her

assisted by her husband only.

Here they are

the three of them

sheltered in a doorway

wrapped in their blankets

as morning comes.


Copyright © 2000, Carolyn S. Scarr

Report on INS Interview

Re: Joseph & family, application for refugee status

You say you come from Israel,

a protectorate of the Roman Empire,

here to Egypt seeking asylum.

Please state your reasons for departure.

You were warned in a dream.

Please state the specifics of the warning.

You were just warned,

by an angel,

to flee with your baby and your wife,

because Herod the king would kill your baby.

You are a village carpenter.

Why would Herod care

whether your baby lived or died?

You are a descendant of David.

How many generations ago did David live

and how many descendants of David are there now?

What other reason would Herod have

to want to kill your child?

You don't know exactly.

You were warned in a dream.

Have you had any other unusual dreams?

You were told in a dream to marry your wife.

You were engaged to be married.

Why wouldn't you marry her?

Right.  So she has dreams, too.

When exactly were you married?  Well,

let's not go into that.  Do you have any other reason

to believe yourselves in danger besides the dream?

As you were travelling here

you heard rumors of a massacre of young children

in the last town you stayed in. 

What reason do you have to believe that massacre

was aimed at you?

Why else would he kill all those babies

–– how should I know?    Everyone knows that Herod

goes in for random mass killing.

The target could be anyone.

You passed through the Sinai Desert on your way

to Egypt.  Why did you not remain there?

Why did you come here?

You say there is not much to eat in the Sinai Desert

and no work.

So you came here for a job.


Conclusion:  It is recommended that Joseph, Mary, and dependent child Jesus be classified as economic refugees.  The presence of bloodshed in the protectorate of Israel does not establish that any violence was directed at them in particular.  Furthermore both adults are subject to delusionary states of mind.  It is probable that their son will exhibit similar behavior.  It is recommended that this family be returned as soon as possible to their country of origin.

© 1994 Carolyn S. Scarr

“On the Edge of Peace — Voices from the faith-Based Peace and Justice Community”, a new anthology from EPI is here!

For a downloadable and attachable (send it around!) PDF description, click: HERE

O n t h e E d g e o f P e a c e

For domestic orders of “On the Edge of Peace”, the price is $15.00 + $5.00 for shipping & handling (for orders outside the US, (or for multiple copies – a price break on shipping) please write or email us for the cost to you.)

You may read order information in our Donation section. Click here.


We remain in solidarity with our brothers and sisters in Haiti. Here are two websites: HaitiSolidarity.net is the official site of Haiti Action Committee working to build a strong Haiti solidarity movement, and the best way to help directly is through the Haiti Emergency Relief Fund.

~ See Calendar for details and announcements of other events and actions....

Living Graveyard and Reading of the Names,
Third Mondays

Oakland Federal Building
1301 Clay Street
two blocks from 12th Street BART

Covered with sheets to represent the dead of the war of occupation on Iraq, people lie down on the city sidewalk in front of the Federal Building, This is legal, non-violent witness. People stop, look and think.

Participants lie at least three feet apart and do not block entry to the building.The names of some of the Californians who have died in Iraq and the names of some of the Iraqi dead will be read. People will hand out flyers, as we do each week at the Monday noon vigil.

Please bring a white sheet to cover yourself with. A pad to lie on is recommended.

Contact 510-527-8370.
sponsors include: Ecumenical Peace Institute,
Berkeley Women in Black, Women for Peace,
East Bay Coalition to Support Self-Rule for Iraqis,
Mustardseed Affinity Group.
Wheelchair accessible.

Weekly Vigils

Wednesdays, noon in front of Boalt Hall on Bancroft Ave. on UC Berkeley campus. Teach-in against Torture.

Wednesdays, 5:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Castro Valley Peace & Justice Vigils, Castro Valley Blvd. & Redwood Rd.

Wednesdays, 6:30-7:30 p.m., El Cerrito vigil for peace, 1st, 3rd, 5th Weds, Del Norte BART, 2nd & 4th Weds in front of Target sign on San Pablo Ave.

Thursdays, noon - one, San Francisco Federal Building, 450 Golden Gate, peace in Iraq, San Francisco Friends

Thursdays, 4:30 - 5:30, Five Flags Park, Foothill, Jackson & Mission, Hayward, justice for Palestinians. South Alameda County Peace and Justice (SAPJC) & Tri-City Peace and Justice (TCP)

Fridays, noon - one, Berkeley, Telegraph & Bancroft, Berkeley Women in Black

Fridays at 3pm -5pm, at Camino Alto and E. Blithdale, Mill Valley.

Fridays, from 3:30 to 4:30, corner of Tiburon Blvd. and San Rafael Avenue, Tiburon. Rain cancels.

Fridays - 4 to 5 pm, Corner of Miller Avenue and Camino Alto in Mill Valley.

Fridays, 5:30 - 7 p.m., corner of Mowry & Fremont, Fremont.

Sundays, 3:00 p.m., walk around Lake Merritt for peace. Meet at the columns at the east end of the Lake, between Grand & Lakeshore Avenues. sponsored by Lake Merritt Neighbors Organized for Peace, LMNOP


Ongoing Actions

Each third Monday, 12:00 - 1:00, at the Oakland Federal Building the weekly anti-war vigil is transformed into a “Living Graveyard.““ Covered with white sheets, participants lie on the city sidewalk, far enough apart to allow for pedestrian and wheelchair traffic. This is legal street theater to make visible the reality of the deaths caused by the war.

Iraq Moratorium organizes a public witness for peace on the Third Friday of each month. To find one near you, visit http://www.iraqmoratorium.com/
In Berkeley, people gather at the northwest corner of Acton & University from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m .


Background re the The Ecumenical Peace Institute
sponsored Vigil from Noon to 1:00 p.m. ach Monday
at the Oakland Federal Building · 1301 Clay (two blocks from the Oakland 12th Street BART Station)

The only legal justification for one country to attack another is to prevent an attack so immediate that the United Nations Security Council cannot be called upon to act.

Some Historical Background:

Post WWI Iraq was ruled by a British-selected monarchy until 1958. In 1968, the Ba’ath party came to power with CIA assistance. Saddam Hussein was supported by both the U.S. and Britain until 1990, throughout the Iran-Iraq war.
In 1990 Iraq invaded Kuwait. Possibilities to negotiate a withdrawal were impeded by two false stories put out by the U.S.

  • Allegations that Iraq was poised to invade Saudi Arabia
  • The Incubator Fraud: "Nayirah" claimed that Iraqi soldiers had taken Kuwaiti babies from incubators and thrown them on the floor to die. Later it was discovered that "Nayirah" was the daughter of the Kuwaiti ambassador to the U.S.

As the U.S. moved into Iraq in 1991, Shi’ites and Kurds were encouraged to rise against the Hussein government. When they did, the U.S. military stood aside and allowed the revolt to be suppressed by the Iraqi government. United Nations sanctions, imposed in 1990 to bring about Iraq’s withdrawal from Kuwait, were continued to bring about Iraq's disarmament with respect to weapons of mass destruction. On May 20, 1991, Secretary of State James Baker stated, "We are not interested in seeing a relaxation of sanctions as long as Saddam Hussein is in power." This remained the position of the U.S. through two subsequent administrations.
In January 1991, the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency reported on the widespread epidemic conditions caused by destruction of the water system under the sanctions in place since August of 1990. This analysis proved all too correct in the ensuing years as 5000 children died each month from water borne diseases. (UN figures)

In December 1998 the UN inspectors were withdrawn by Richard Butler in anticipation of the U.S. bombing of Iraq. They were not "thrown out". Hussein did not allow the UNSCOM inspectors to return without a plan to complete inspections and end sanctions. The International Atomic Energy Agency was allowed to continue inspections regarding nuclear weapons.

The road to Gulf War II

  • After the attack on the World Trade Center, September 11, 2001, the Bush administration attempted to find a connection between the Islamic fundamentalists and the secular Ba'athist regime of Saddam Hussein. None was ever found.
  • None of the allegations of current Iraqi possession of weapons of mass destruction has been accompanied with supporting data that holds up under examination. Aluminum tubes, African uranium experts and eyewitnesses have debunked all the stories. UNSCOM inspectors found nothing to indicate a current weapons program. Independent observations of alleged sites have turned up nothing.

End the Occupation ­­ Stop the War

Stop Killing Iraqi People
Bring Our Soldiers Home Alive

All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state ...

United Nations Charter
Article 2, Paragraph 4

Important Links:

HaitiSolidarity.net | Haiti Emergency Relief Fund
Christian Peacemaker Teams | Dorothy Granada's Site
GandhiServe Foundation | Grace Cathedral
Voices For Independence | East Bay Sanctuary Covenant
Declaration of Peace | Iraq Moratorium
Tri-Valley CARES

Many of the faithful have passed to another plane of existence. Here are several memorial Websites for our brothers and sisters:

¡Presente! all.

To contact us:

Ecumenical Peace Institute/CALC
P. O. Box 9334 • Berkeley, CA 94709
epicalc@gmail.com; epicalc@lmi.net
(510) 990-0374 or 510 99 00 EPI.

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