What do we mean by justice and peace?
The Justice & Peace Program at Iliff has continually evolved since its formation in 1988 in order to meet new challenges and open new possibilities. Despite such evolution, however, the program has always been marked by a number of unique qualities. The most notable of these qualities include:
- An emphasis upon the voices and perspectives of marginalized, underrepresented, and disempowered communities;
- A dedication to making education relevant to real-world contexts of oppression and suffering;
- A fusion of cutting-edge theory and meaningful praxis; and
- An integrative approach that respects difference while exploring the connections among justice and peace, spirituality and social action, and the Christian tradition and other religious traditions.
Thus, one way of communicating the ideals we attempt to embody is to say that we articulate peace as the living expression of justice. In turn, we understand justice as embracing all the conditions necessary for communities to thrive in balance with their environments (both natural and social) and the wider web of life. We identify these conditions in a holistic and collective sense, including the material needed by bodies, the engagement needed by minds, the meaning needed by spirits, the belonging needed by individuals, and the freedom needed by peoples.