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Proclaiming The Week of Peace and Nonviolence in Oakland, NJ

Posted by Erin Bechtol

At the borough council meeting on July 25, Lauretta Patron asked the mayor and council to issue a proclamation declaring September 15-23 a week of peace and nonviolence in Oakland, NJ. (As seen in the video below.)

Then at the August 8 borough council meeting, Mayor Linda Schwager read the proclamation designating the week of September 15-23 as “The Week of Peace and Nonviolence” in Oakland and urging all citizens to help establish a culture of nonviolence, in the hope of ending war, poverty, racism, and environmental destruction.

The Mayor reads the proclamation at 13:54 minutes into the video (as seen above).  The text of the proclamation follows:



WHEREAS the people of Oakland establish a culture of nonviolence when they treat each other with respect and compassion, giving food to the hungry, clothing to those in need, and standing in solidarity against racism; and

WHEREAS our first responders practice nonviolence when they bring healing to the pain and suffering resulting from violence; and

WHEREAS our police officers internalize a spirit of nonviolence when they respond peacefully while protecting the community from violent offenders; and

WHEREAS our students demonstrate nonviolence when they stand publicly against bullying and gun violence; and

WHEREAS our Mayor and Council practice nonviolence toward the earth when they choose to protect our sensitive and beautiful Highlands from over-development; and

WHEREAS we embrace a commitment to nonviolence when we use peaceful methods of dealing with conflict, instead of resorting to the destructiveness of war, which has caused so much suffering in the lives of our Veterans and their families;

NOW THEREFORE, I, Linda H. Schwager, Mayor of Oakland, NJ, with the concurrence of the Borough Council, do hereby proclaim September 15-23, 2018 as THE WEEK OF PEACE AND NONVIOLENCE in Oakland, NJ and urge all citizens to help develop within our borough a culture of nonviolence, in the hope of ending war, poverty, racism, and environmental destruction.


Linda H. Schwager, Mayor


Then at 41.20 minutes, Beatrice Mondare thanks the mayor and council and invites all watching the video to participate in the prayer walk on September 23. More information about the walk can be seen below.


Campaign Nonviolence Action in Oakland

Event: A Nonviolent Prayer Walk

Date: Sunday, September 23rd

Time: Starting at 3:00 pm

Place: From Messiah Lutheran church, along Ramapo Valley Road, ending at Veterans Park, with stops for prayer at the First Aid Squad, police headquarters, Valley Middle School and Municipal Building

Co-Sponsors: Social Justice Ministry of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church and Oakland Franklin Lakes Interfaith Clergy, OFLIC,  (pastors of St. Alban’s Episcopal Church, Franklin Lakes United Methodist Church, Ramapo Valley Baptist Church, Ponds Reformed Church, Barnert Temple, High Mountain Presbyterian Church, Most Blessed Sacrament Roman Catholic Church, Temple Emmanuel of North Jersey, and Messiah Lutheran Church)

Please bring a can of food to donate to the Oakland Food Pantry at Ponds Church

Places of Prayer and Prayer themes:

  • Messiah Lutheran Church
  • First Aid Squad
  • Police Headquarters
  • Valley Middle school
  • Municipal Building
  • Veterans Park

At the beginning and end and at each stop, there will be a prayer and/or scripture reading on a relevant theme. Suggested themes follow:

A. At beginning: General prayer for conversion of hearts to nonviolence, to a recognition that we are all one people, and for an end to the violence of poverty and racism and their institutional underpinnings. (Before the march begins, each participant will be given a copy of the Campaign Nonviolence Covenant specifying that we agree to act mindfully, in a spirit of nonviolence, during the march. Some participants will also be given a blue scarf to wear, as a symbol of global unity and solidarity. Participants will also receive a copy of the CNV Pledge of Nonviolence, which we will recite together at Veterans’ Park.)

B. At first aid squad:  Prayer recognizing violent situations (in families, in cities, caused by gangs etc.) and expressing thanks for those who respond and help the victims of such violence, like the first aid volunteers and volunteer firemen

C. At Police Headquarters:  Gratitude for those who place themselves in harm’s way to ensure the safety of the community and prayer that they will internalize non-violence and respond to violence peacefully

D. At Middle School:  Prayer recognizing the violence suffered by students within schools, both bullying and gun violence, and praying for the safety of students and teachers and for wisdom for school officials as they work to protect students

E. At Municipal offices: Prayer for public officials that they commit to creating in our area a culture of nonviolence and a deep concern for the beautiful environment in which we all live

F. At end in Veterans Park: A prayer recognizing the sacrifice veterans have made for our nation and a prayer for an end to all war and the destruction it brings so that no others will be asked to make the same sacrifice Also, in Veterans Park, all participants will recite together the CNV Pledge of Nonviolence.


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