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Published: Saturday, 3/1/2008

Pax Christi leader slates 2 speeches in Toledo

Dave Robinson, a leader in the Catholic peace movement who is recognized for his expertise in disarmament and nuclear deterrence, will be in Toledo for two lectures this week, speaking Wednesday night on Iran and U.S. policy and Thursday afternoon on Nonviolence and Social Justice.

Mr. Robinson is the executive director of Pax Christi USA, a peace organization that traces its roots to Europe in 1945, when French Catholics were agonizing over the fact that people who professed the same faith and celebrated the same Eucharist were engaged in war with one another because of national boundaries.

The group opened centers in France and Germany and by the early 1950s had spread to Spain, Italy, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, and the Netherlands.

Pax Christi came to the United States in 1972, opened an office in Chicago in 1979, and moved to Erie, Pa., in 1985.

The organization s statement of purpose describes its goal as creating a world that reflects the Peace of Christ by exploring, articulating, and witnessing the call of Christian nonviolence. This work begins in personal life and extends to communities of reflection and action to transform structures of society.

Pax Christi USA rejects war, preparations for war, and every form of violence and domination. It advocates primacy of conscience, economic and social justice, and respect for creation.

Mr. Robinson has led or participated in delegations to such war-torn countries as Iraq, El Salvador, Colombia, and Afghanistan. He recently joined a delegation to Iran where he met with religious and political leaders, including President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

He has been involved in a number of direct actions for peace, including the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Darfur, Sudan; campaigns against U.S. nuclear weapons policy, and corporate globalization.

His Toledo visit will feature a free lecture on Iran and U.S. Policy at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Corpus Christi University Parish, 2955 Dorr St., and a talk at the First Thursday Dialogue lecture series at the Toledo Club, Madison and 14th streets, at noon Thursday. The luncheon, sponsored by the Toledo diocese, costs $15 and reservations are available by calling 419-244-6711, ext. 515.



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