Peace at the center: EMES peace pledge

September 25, 2023 / Christine Coddington

Peace is a fundamental aspect of human interaction that lies at the heart of our relationships with one another. It is a concept often viewed as abstract and intangible, but it can be extended to others in simple yet profound ways. This was the message that was beautifully encapsulated in the book “Peace is An Offering,” which was shared with students at an EMES gathering by Ms. Archer.

“Peace is gratitude for simple things. Light through a leaf, a dragonfly’s wings.” 

Peace is an Offering, by Annette LeBox, Penguin Young Readers Group, 2015.

During this gathering, students were asked to think of ways they could offer peace to one another using parts of their school’s pledge of non-violence. Each class was presented with a loaf of bread, symbolizing unity, sharing, and the offering of peace. In a simple yet heartfelt act of giving and receiving, each student tore off a piece of bread and offered it to the next, fostering a sense of connection and community.

Through this exercise, the students learned that peace is not an abstract concept but a tangible and achievable reality in their everyday lives. The accompanying photos of EMES students signing the pledge of non-violence and offering bread to one another serve as a testament to the power of simple acts of kindness and understanding. They remind us that peace starts with every one of us, and we can all strive to keep it at the center of our lives and communities by respecting ourselves and others, communicating better, listening, forgiving, respecting nature, playing creatively, and being courageous.

Eastern Mennonite School offers a unique approach to early childhood education that centers around the practice of peace. Starting from Kindergarten, the teachers and staff at Eastern Mennonite School consciously integrate peacemaking into every aspect of the curriculum. If you are looking for an education that emphasizes peacebuilding and conflict resolution, this may be the perfect fit for your preschooler. The school is currently offering two kindergarten open house dates.

 October 12 and October 24, 2023, from 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM

To register, simply complete an inquiry form on our website.

If you are already in their records, you can contact Abigail Cook, admissions counselor, at 540-236-6021 or to register. 

Space is limited, so don’t miss this opportunity to come see Eastern Mennonite School in action and be inspired.

Check out some more photos from this story


  1. Norman on September 30, 2023 at 3:11 am

    And peace must start with a nonviolent childhood, says Austrian peace researcher Franz Jedlicka (“The forgotten peace formula”), or Robin Grille (Parenting for a peaceful World) …


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