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ABOUT US >> FAQ

What does Pax Christi mean?
The name is Latin and means the Peace of Christ.

What is Pax Christi International?
It is best described as a Peace Movement and Network. Pax Christ International is just what the name says - “international”. It is made up of a number of autonomous Member Organisations, affiliated, local groups and partners.

Who are the members?
There are all types of lay and religious people from all backgrounds and all cultures. There are more than 100 Member Organisations spread over 50 countries and 5 continents.

What do they do?
They are involved in a wide variety of work related to peace and justice - from local grassroots activities and national education campaigns to international advocacy. Each Member Organisation is involved in projects that are important to them.

So is Pax Christi International different than Pax Christi Australia or Pax Christi France?
Yes. Countries have their own sections - such as Pax Christi Germany or Pax Christi Italy. Each section is autonomous. Pax Christi International sets priorities within the international peace movement and helps to co-ordinate the work of the various members all over the world. It also represents the movement on an international level.

How does it represent the movement?
Pax Christi International is a non-governmental organisation with special consultative status at several intergovernmental organisations including the United Nations (UN), UNESCO, UNICEF, the African Union and the Council of Europe. It works to promote the peace agenda through these organisations with advocacy, interventions and awareness raising.

What areas of peace does it work in?
The work is focused on 5 concerns: Human Rights, the Rule of Law and Violent Conflict; Human Security and Violence; Disarmament and Demilitarisation; Just World Order; and Religion and Violent Conflict – and on 8 strategies: Conflict transformation, Peace Building, Education and Youth Work for Peace, Interfaith and Intercultural Cooperation for Peace, Nonviolent Social Change, Developing Peace Spirituality and Theology, Advocacy and Campaigning, and Networking.

How is the work done?
It is realised in some basic categories for work: the thematic groups, the regional and continental consultations and the Triennial World Assembly.

What do they do?
It depends on the region, the topic, the priority and the members involved in specific areas. Some are involved in advocacy work. One example might be: written or oral interventions at the UN Human Rights Council on the issue of child soldiers. Some are involved in direct action like work in refugee camps. Others do research and education.

What are some concrete examples?
There are a lot to choose from. Pax Christi International made several written and oral interventions on the right of conscientious objection at the Human Rights Council of the United Nations in Geneva. The movement campaigned with other NGOs for an Advisory Opinion from the International Court of Justice (World Court) on the illegality of nuclear weapons.

Pax Christi International issued a statement “Towards Global Zero of Nuclear Weapons Now.” Pax Christi issued a statement on the question of Jerusalem, including the role/position of the three world religions in the Holy City.

How does spirituality fit in?
Pax Christ International's work is based in spirituality. It is a Catholic organisation but welcomes all faith based groups, as well as those not affiliated with a religious group.

How did it start?
Pax Christi began in France and Germany at the end of World War II by Catholic men and women working for reconciliation. It quickly spread throughout Europe and eventually the rest of the world. In 2005 Pax Christ International celebrated 60 years of work.

Who’s in charge?
Pax Christi International works a lot like a government. It is made up of a Triennial World Assembly, an Executive Committee with an International Co-presidency, an Annual General Meeting and an International Secretariat.

What is the Triennial World Assembly?
The Pax Christi International Triennial World Assembly determines common priorities and objectives of the movement, works out common action programmes for all Member Organisations, selects themes for study and action, and approves recommendations, resolutions and declarations.

Delegates from the National Sections, Affiliated Organisations, Strategic Alliances and Executive Committee make up the Assembly. A representative selection of the local Pax Christi groups and Partner Organisations can also be invited to attend. The TWA meets every three years in different locations all over the world.

What is the Executive Committee?
The Executive Committee of Pax Christi International functions in a manner similar to a Board of Directors. The ExCom meets twice a year. They are responsible for the international work of the movement. They receive recommendations from the Continental and Regional Consultations, as well as guidelines from the AGM and the TWA.

Who is the International President?
Marie Dennis (USA) and Msgr. Kevin Dowling (South Africa) were elected co-presidents in 2010.

Who is the Secretary General?
Pax Christi International has been engaged in a process of long-range organizational planning. To facilitate that process and provide the strong administrative leadership necessary at this time, the Pax Christi International Executive Committee appointed Greet Vanaerschot as acting Secretary General, effective 1 January 2011. Greet has served Pax Christi very well for over 20 years most recently as Deputy Secretary General. She is working closely with us as co-presidents and with Pax Christi Internationals dedicated staff. Her leadership at this time is extremely valuable to the Pax Christi movement worldwide.
Claudette Werleigh, whose term as Secretary General ended on 31 December 2010, was named a Pax Christi International Peace Envoy and will continue to serve our movement in that capacity.

Where does the money come from?
Funding comes from contributions from the member organisations and other sources like grants and donations.

How can I participate?
The movement works through volunteers just like you. You can register for the monthly Newsletter here

For more information contact a local Pax Christi Member Organisation to find out what you can do.



Pax Christi International - rue du Vieux Marché aux Grains, 21 - 1000 Brussels Belgium
Tel. +32 2 502 55 50 - Fax. +32 2 502 46 26
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