This list includes efforts by national bodies (denominational and faith group headquarters offices, denominational advocacy offices in Washington D.C., and national ecumenical and interfaith organizations; Regional bodies like judicatories (dioceses, presbyteries, synods, conferences etc.), and state ecumenical and interfaith agencies; Local bodies including congregations, metropolitan ecumenical and interfaith bodies, and campus ministries.
Possible national strategies:
- Encourage and enable denominational bodies to prepare statements on lethal drones.
- Encourage the National Council of Churches and other national ecumenical and interfaith bodies to adopt statements on lethal drones.
- Encourage national mission agencies to assign an office and a staff person to include lethal drones.
- Prepare videos and printed study materials on lethal drones. Videos of presentations at the Interfaith Conference on Drone Warfare are viewable at www.peacecoalition.org/dronesconference.
- Prepare a statement for signature by the heads of denominations, religious leaders and members of congregations across the country.
- Relate to international religious bodies encouraging them to support an international, interfaith statement on lethal drones.
- Enable denominational advocacy offices to encourage members of Congress to prepare legislation and support legislation consistent with the statements of the Interfaith Working Group on Drone Warfare.
- Create a website for the Interfaith Working Group on Drone Warfare
- Create Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts.
- Develop information on legislation for people of faith throughout the country that want to support or oppose bills on lethal drones.
- Prepare talking points for people of faith across the country to write op-eds and letters-to-the editor.
- Develop strategies for placing op-eds and LTE's across the country.
- Hire a public relations firm to develop and implement media strategies. You can see the media coverage produced by the Interfaith Conference on Drone Warfare at www.peacecoalition.org/dronesmediacoverage.
- Place articles on lethal drones in denominational and ecumenical and interfaith publications.
- Ensure that the issue of lethal drones is included in faith-based conferences and gatherings.
- Prepare materials and encourage campus ministries to work on lethal drones.
- Increase the number of denominations and faith groups that work on lethal drones, and encourage them to work together through the Working Group.
- Encourage regional bodies of denominations to use the materials on lethal drones.
- Work closely with national human rights and peace groups working on lethal drones.
- Encourage seminaries to include lethal drones in their educational efforts.
- Prepare sermon starters for clergy.
- Prepare worship materials.
- Join law suits as plaintiffs or friends of the court.
- Work with military chaplains and with denominational endorsers of military chaplains. Endorsers meet once a year. Perhaps several denominational staff could meet with the endorsers and perhaps the National Conference on Ministry to the Armed Forces. It is noted that the Military Chaplains Association has an advocacy function.
Possible Regional Strategies
- Plan presentations on lethal drones during regular meetings of regional bodies.
- Plan presentations and workshops on lethal drones during special gatherings of regional bodies and interfaith and ecumenical bodies. These might be held on Memorial Day or other appropriate holidays.
- Encourage regional bodies to adopt statements on lethal drones.
- Participate in strategies to place op-eds and LTE's in newspapers and other secular publications.
- Encourage congregations to use education materials on lethal drones.
- Encourage the use of worship materials.
- Encourage congregations to participate in national advocacy efforts. Ask state religious advocacy efforts to support the national efforts.
- Place articles on lethal drones in their publications.
- Encourage campus ministries in the state or region to work on the issue of lethal drones.
- Encourage seminaries to include the issue of lethal drones in their teaching.
- Encourage clergy and people of faith to sign a statement on lethal drones.
- Organize interfaith worship services and events that focus on the issue of drone warfare.
- Work in coalition with other faith groups, human rights and other organizations. Contact Peace Action Education Fund for models, ideas, and resources for such regional interfaith efforts.
- Urge congregations, campus ministries and interfaith and ecumenical agencies to use educational materials on lethal drones. Include lethal drones in the already scheduled educational classes and events. Videos of the Interfaith Conference on Drone Warfare, including a half hour summary, will be available at peacecoalition.org.
- Recruit individuals to participate in advocacy efforts to support federal legislation on drones. This might include meetings with elected officials in district and/or in Washington, D.C., writing or calling them, and recruiting as many as participants as possible.
- Prepare op-eds and LTE's for publication. Work with the national strategy for placing these in local newspapers. Faith-based op-eds can be found at www.peacecoalition.org/dronesconference
- Encourage other congregations to participate in the work on lethal drones and work together ecumenically or an interfaith basis.
- Encourage clergy to preach on the issue.
- Encourage members of congregations to sign a faith-based statement on lethal drones.
- Participate in regional demonstrations, vigils, and other protests of drone bases that are being developed in a growing number of communities around the country.
- Support members of the congregation and others who have engaged in nonviolent civil disobedience as a method of addressing drone warfare.
- Quilts have been produced representing those who died in drone strikes. Congregations can construct quilts. You can learn more at . https://dronesquiltproject.wordpress.com/about/.
- Sponsor worship services at drone bases.
POSSIBLE NATIONAL STRUCTURES FOR IMPLEMENTING THESE ACTIVITIES
There is a need for an ongoing nationally coordinated effort to enable the religious community at the national, regional and local levels to work on the issue of lethal drones and targeted killings.
The conference participants expressed a sense that continuing and strengthening the ongoing close cooperation between the DC-based Interfaith Working Group on Drone Warfare and the Princeton-based Peace Action Education Fund (PAEF), which is a member of the Working Group, would be the best way to provide support for the work of the religious community on drone warfare. The PAEF currently has funds for this work through June 2015.
Within this close cooperative relationship, the Interfaith Working Group will primarily engage in advocacy efforts, while PAEF will emphasize educational, communications, and organizing. Those who wish to donate for the drones work may do so now to the Peace Action Education Fund, a 501 c3 organization. Gifts are tax deductible. The address is 40 Witherspoon St., Princeton, NJ 08542. The phone number is 609-924-5022.