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DR. EVERETT B. KELLEY, THE FIRST MAN TO RECEIVE ALL THREE WORLD PEACE PRIZE AWARDS

 

 

EXCERPT OF FR. McMANUS’ ADDRESS PRESENTING THE WORLD PEACE PRIZE TO AFGE NATIONAL PRESIDENT EVERETT B. KELLEY.

Since Barbara Flaherty became a Judge, and I became the Chief Judge of the World Peace Prize in 2013, we have made social justice the heart and soul of peace, and of the World Peace Prize.

Why does a World Religion peace group make social justice so central?

  •      Because, as the American Protestant Old Testament Scholar Rev. Walter Brueggemann has stated: “In Biblical faith, the doing of justice is the primary expectation of God.”
  •      Because Islamic scholar Ajmal Masroor states: “Standing firm for justice is considered closest to Godliness. In other words, my religious and social responsibility is to work for just causes.”
  •     Because Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. taught us that peace is the fruit of justice; and Saint Pope John Paul II taught us, “peace is the fruit of solidarity.”
  •     Because the Catholic Church teaches: “… Action on behalf of justice [is] a constitutive dimension of the preaching of the Gospel…and [a constitutive dimension] of the Church’s mission for the redemption of the human race and its liberation from every oppressive situation.”
  •     Because this is how Jesus Christ, Himself, announced His mission: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me because He has appointed me to bring good news to the poor, to proclaim liberty to captives, to give the blind new sight, and to set free all who are oppressed,” (Luke 4:18-19).
  •     And because Jesus declared: “In so far as you did it to least of my brothers and sisters, you did it to me.” (Matthew 25:40).

That is why we were able to place American Organized Labor in the category of those who should be considered worthy recipients of the World Peace Prize—because Labor leaders who spend their lives fighting for social and economic justice for working women and men are also building peace locally, nationally, and globally.

And, the wonderful thing about placing social justice at the heart and center of peace is this: People of faith believe that faith must be the faith that does justice on this earth (otherwise, it is not faith). And people of no faith, but of goodwill, also believe they have to do justice on this earth, otherwise, they are not of goodwill…

Faith is the faith that does justice

Without social justice, there is no love

Faith is the faith that does justice. There is no other faith. If it does not do justice, it is not faith—not the Jewish faith, not the Christian faith, not the Muslim faith, not any faith.

President Trumka’s key support and advise

When we approached President Trumka with our proposal to link the World Peace Prize with American Organized Labor, he absolutely loved the idea and endorsed it enthusiastically and with gratitude. 

President Trumka, however, advised us that the opponents of Labor and fair employment would deeply resent our linking the World Peace Prize to American Organized Labor, and he told us to expect some blowback. He advised that such blowback would probably not first come from known enemies of Labor, but from some individuals within Labor, as always happens in these matters—internal opposition is always more effective than external opposition. Everyone and every group involved in the struggle for justice knows that old story very well and knows how that game is played.

President Trumka’s warm embrace and dedicated sponsorship of the World Peace Prize throughout the AFL-CIO and American Organized Labor is now a key part of his magnificent legacy, which all true Labor people proudly accept in solidarity and gratitude. As President Shuler said in welcoming our re-naming of the World Peace Prize for Solidarity to the ‘President Richard L. Trumka World Peace Prize for Solidarity’: ‘Rich Trumka’s contributions to peace and prosperity around the world were countless. He was a global ambassador for worker rights, economic justice, dignity, and respect for all human beings. I can think of no one more deserving of this honor.’

And, the Trumka Family has stated: ‘We are honored that Rich’s name will live on, always linked with solidarity and peace because the World Peace Prize for Solidarity will be re-named in his honor the Richard L. Trumka World Peace Prize for Solidarity.’

I will always be profoundly grateful to President Trumka for helping us to launch the World Peace Prize throughout the Labor Movement. And, to further honor his memory, we now refer to American Organized Labor as “Organized Love of Neighbor.” 

President Kelly recipient of all three World Peace Prizes

We were pleased to nominate National President Kelley for all three Prizes: World Peace Prize of Roving Ambassador for Peace; the Richard L. Trumka World Peace Prize for Solidarity; and today’s Prize, World Peace Prize for Labor Leadership.

 And we did so because of his outstanding record. He is a most impressive man; a formidable Labor Leader; a thoughtful, steadfast, gracious man of justice and solidarity. He, like President Trumka, instantly understood the importance of our linking the World Peace Prize to American Organized Labor. President Kelley has expressed deep appreciation for the meaning we have invested in the World Peace Prizes. Such understanding is an essential criterion for being selected as a Laureate of the World Peace Prize.

President Kelley, it is an honor and blessing to know you. God bless you.

 We are honored to honor you with the World Peace Prize for Labor Leadership.

AFL-CIO AND WORLD PEACE PRIZE

 

AFL-CIO AND WORLD PEACE PRIZE—IRISH PEACE FOUNDATION/IRISH NATIONAL CAUCUS

By Fr. Sean McManus

 

In February 1975, the Executive Council of the AFL-CIO invited me to Bal Harbour, Florida,  to brief them on the Irish issue. The Executive Council on that same day endorsed the Irish National Caucus. President Meany delegated Lane Kirkland, Secretary-Treasurer, to announce the endorsement at a Caucus luncheon hosted by Labor Leaders and attended by a couple of hundred labor leaders.

Then about ten years later, the Executive Council invited me to brief them in Bal Harbour on the MacBride Principles—a corporate code of conduct for American companies doing business in Northern Ireland.

The AFL-CIO became the first significant group to endorse the Mac Bride Principles.

So, I have known every President of the AFL-CIO since George Meany to Liz Shuler.

Indeed, when we honored Ms. Esther Lopez, International Secretary-Treasurer, UFCW, with a World Peace Prize at the AFL-CIO Headquarters, February 5, 2019, then Secretary-Treasurer Shuler asked us if she could speak at our Presentation Ceremony. Of course, we were delighted and honored to accommodate her. She stated: “Thank you, Barbara Flaherty, for the kind introduction. I also want to thank Father Sean McManus for his leadership and vision, as well as Reverend Dr. Han Min Su and the entire World Peace Prize Awarding Council for everything they do to build a better world. There is a crystal-clear connection between the labor movement and peace and justice in our world.”

International President Perrone and his top team praised our honoring of Ms. Lopez in this Ad in the Honorific Journal:

“The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) proudly supports the Irish National Caucus World Peace Prize.

We salute this year’s World Peace Prize for Labor Leadership recipients, including our very own UFCW International Secretary-Treasurer Esther R. Lopez for their contribution to world peace through seeking solidarity, equality, and justice for all working men and women.”

And, President Shuler made the following statement welcoming our re-naming of the Prize to the “Richard L. Trumka World Peace Prize for Solidarity,” said: “Rich Trumka’s contributions to peace and prosperity around the world were countless. He was a global ambassador for worker rights, economic justice, dignity, and respect for all human beings. I can think of no one more deserving of this honor.” (November 8, 2021).

And, when we honored President Trumka himself with the World Peace Prize of  “Roving Ambassador for Peace” —(his inaugural and formal launching of the World Peace Prize throughout the AFL-CIO/American Organized Labor), he said: “I know that Father McManus has moved the needle [on solidarity, justice, and peace in Ireland], and Father, for that I offer you, on behalf of the entire AFL-CIO, a sincere Thank you.” —President Richard L. Trumka, AFL-CIO, February 3, 2016.’

And, President Trumka also later stated:

“I want to thank Barbara Flaherty, Fr. McManus, and the World Peace Prize Awarding Council for recognizing the nexus between Organized Labor and peace. Too many times in the past we were not looked at as being part of the peace process. So, I really appreciate the World Peace Prize Awarding Council recognizing the connection between fighting for social justice and peace.”

—President Richard L. Trumka, AFL-CIO in his acceptance address on receiving the World Peace Prize for Labor Leadership at AFL-CIO Headquarters in Washington, DC. June 19, 2018. (To review President Trumka’s acceptance speech, go to vimeo.com/275953504)

TRUMKA FAMILY ENDORSEMENT AND PRAISE

The re-naming of the Prize has been warmly welcomed by the Trumka Family: “We are honored that Rich’s name will live on, always linked with solidarity and peace because the World Peace Prize for Solidarity will be re-named in his honor the ‘Richard L. Trumka World Peace Prize for Solidarity.'” (October 9, 2021).

And, President Trumka’s son, Rich Jr., stated: “[My father] appreciated that the World Peace Prize saw what so many others missed…that organized labor through solidarity, and the pursuit of justice, forges the path to peace.” (January 5, 2023).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Charles Brave, Jr., South Carolina State President, AFL-CIO, will be a new recipient of the “Richard L. Trumka World Peace Prize for Solidarity.”

CAPITOL HILL. Monday, March 20, 2023.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

The World Peace Prize has announced that South Carolina State President, AFL-CIO, Charles Brave, Jr., is a Laureate of the “Richard L. Trumka World Peace Prize for Solidarity.”

The Presentation Ceremony will take place from 2:30 to 4:30 PM, May 11, 2023, in the AFL-CIO Headquarters, 2999 Sunset Blvd. Suite 103, West Columbia, SC 29169. 

President Brave’s office will issue the invitations to this free event—not a fundraiser.

The announcement was made by Fr. Sean McManus, Chief Judge of the World Peace Prize and President of the Capitol Hill-based Irish National Caucus/Irish Peace Foundation.

Fr. McManus explained: “The late, great President Trumka, God rest him, on February 3, 2016, at his AFL-CIO Headquarters, helped us to launch the World Peace Prize throughout American Organized Labor. In his memory, we re-named the World Peace Prize for Solidarity the: “Richard L. Trumka World Peace Prize for Solidarity.”

There was wide and warm welcome for the re-naming of the prize.

Organized Labor as “Organized Love of Neighbor” because “Love of Neighbor” means, in effect, the doing of social justice on this earth: “The labor movement was the principal force that transformed misery and despair into hope and progress.”— Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., 1965 Address to Illinois AFL-CIO.

President Trumka deeply appreciated and enthusiastically supported our linking Organized Labor to the World Peace Prize and that is now an important part of his legacy. View his own 3-minute statement— https://drive.google.com/file/d/13ZF5S61DVCS7Cuey4YAl3Dn6kA0ztr3C/view

And President Trumka’s son, Rich Jr., has stated:'[My father] appreciated that the World Peace Prize saw what so many others missed…that organized labor through solidarity, and the pursuit of justice, forges the path to peace.’ (January 5, 2023). 

President Trumka also greatly welcomed our policy of diversity, equity, and inclusion in our selection of World Peace Prize Laureates.

I have the honor of being the Chief Judge of the World Peace Prize, which is headquartered in Seoul, South Korea. It was founded in 1989 by the late Presbyterian Minister, Rev. Dr. Han Min Su. Its Awarding Council of international and inter-faith Judges are representatives of all nine major world religious groups.

 I was pleased to propose President Brave because he is a true trailblazer—being the first Black person to ever be a State President of the massive AFL-CIO. And now he is the first State AFL-CIO President to be announced a Laureate of the Richard L. Trumka World Peace Prize for Solidarity—and I know President Trumka is smiling down on that. Furthermore, it’s one thing to be a Union Leader in a strong Labor Union State, and another thing to be a Union Leader in a State like South Carolina where Union membership rates are the lowest in the entire United States. That takes admirable steadfastness, dedication, and solidarity. And deserves special commendation.

President Brave —like the beloved President Trumka, AFL-CIO — has shown a lifelong commitment to the Union, and to solidarity, social justice, and peace. And social justice is the heart and soul of peace, and of the World Peace Prize.

Since I became the Chief Judge in 2013, we have made social justice front and center—the heart and soul— of the World Peace Prize. And, also, we have placed American Organized Labor in the category of those who should be considered worthy recipients of the World Peace Prize—because Labor leaders who spend their lives fighting for social justice for working women and men are also building peace locally, nationally, and worldwide.

And the wonderful thing about placing social justice at the heart and center of peace is this: People of faith believe that faith must be the faith that does justice on this earth (otherwise, it is not faith). And people of no faith, but of goodwill, also know they have to do justice (otherwise, they are not of goodwill).

Furthermore, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. taught us that peace is the fruit of justice; and Saint Pope John Paul II taught us, “peace is the fruit of solidarity.”  

President Brave said:” I am honored and humbled by this precious and blessed Prize, which I accept on behalf of the South Carolina AFL-CIO. To receive a World Peace Prize re-named in honor of the great and beloved President Trumka —and, moreover, a Prize for solidarity—is something that no true Labor person could receive without feeling overwhelmed. I am profoundly grateful.”

END.

 

 

ROVING FOR PEACE

 

ROVING FOR PEACE
Amsterdam News. New York. November 24, 2022.

Recently I was awarded the World Peace Prize and named: “Roving Ambassador for Peace.” This prestigious award was bestowed upon me—the first Teamster to be honored by this organization dedicated to social and labor justice—by Father Sean McManus, president and founder of the Washington-based Irish National Caucus. In his remarks, McManus said that I was “the perfect exemplar and role model for the World Peace Prize.” WOW! It was an extraordinary moment that made me think, how exactly do you “rove for peace”? That’s not so easy.

The awards ceremony was filled with noble talk on weighty issues. McManus spoke about their two main objectives: to assert the basic principle that peace is the fruit of justice and that working for peace means, in fact, working for social justice. And to firmly place the American Labor Movement in the category of those who work for peace—all the time, every day, year-after-year since the late 1800s. That’s a big goal. McManus went on to quote from several biblical scholars and members of the clergy who support the notion that working for justice is required for those with faith in God or those people simply of good will. He mentioned that the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. loved to quote the Prophet Amos, who said: “Let justice roll down like water, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.” McManus said that even “people of no faith and no religion—but of good will—can agree in principle with these words. All people of good will, all fair-minded people, recognize that, without justice, civilized society cannot stand; fair treatment cannot stand; fair employment cannot stand; and a just and living wage cannot stand. That is how central and basic social justice is. It unites people of faith who want to do God’s work on Earth—and it unites people of no faith who want to do the fair and decent thing.”

Upon receiving a plaque and medal at the awards ceremony, I addressed the audience, telling them, “To receive an award inspired by the work of some of America’s greatest leaders in social and labor justice—like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka—is humbling. They believed that labor justice and social justice are forever intertwined. You can’t have one without the other. But equality, respect and compassion should not only be workplace goals, but also everyday goals of humanity. Dr. King perhaps expressed it best when he said: ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.’ Dr. King also said: ‘Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.’ How well that fits the mission of the World Peace Foundation, which is to NOT remain silent in the face of threats to justice and peace. And it is the mission of labor unions, like Teamsters Local 237 NOT to be silent either.”

So now that I am entrusted with a mighty title and lofty assignment, questions remain, how does one “rove for peace”? Is it something you actively look for like a missing puzzle piece? And where do you search? Or is peace something you can create like a painting? Is it something you can achieve alone, or does it require collaboration? And perhaps the biggest question: once you’ve found it, what’s the next step? Beatle John Lennon had a suggestion when he famously wrote the song verse “Give peace a chance.” The irony here, of course, is that this is now etched in stone in Central Park, where he was assassinated. Clearly, roving for peace is complicated.  Perhaps the job needs to be broken-down into parts: a sort of micro/macro distinction of personal peace and world peace. Peace of mind can be derived from the satisfaction found in offering kindness and compassion to others…feeling good about yourself because you helped someone, especially someone in need. World peace is trickier and requires a bigger operation, yet starts by voting and helping to elect people who are admirable and worthy of our trust—people who seek public office not for personal gain but instead, as Father McManus said, are “people of principles who just want to do the decent thing.” Macro peace thereby can only be achieved by those who will lead us with an unwavering commitment for justice and fairness.

Clearly, the job of a “Roving Ambassador for Peace” is to identify people of good will, inspired by Spike Lee’s advice to “do the right thing” and encourage them to get involved.

 

GENERAL PRESIDENT FRANK J. CHRISTENSEN, IUEC, FIRST RECIPIENT OF THE RE-NAMED “RICHARD L. TRUMKA WORLD PEACE PRIZE FOR SOLIDARITY.”

 

GENERAL PRESIDENT FRANK J. CHRISTENSEN, IUEC, FIRST RECIPIENT OF THE RE-NAMED “RICHARD L. TRUMKA WORLD PEACE PRIZE FOR SOLIDARITY.”
 
CAPITOL HILL. Wednesday, October 12, 2022—The World Peace Prize has announced that General President Frank. J. Christensen, International Union of Elevator Constructors, will be the first Laureate of the “Richard L. Trumka World Peace Prize For Solidarity.”
The Presentation Ceremony will take place at his Maryland Headquarters, 7154 Columbia Gateway Drive, Columbia, MD 21046— on a weekday from 2:30 PM to 4:30 PM on a date to be soon announced.
His office will issue the invitations to this free event—not a fundraiser.
The announcement was made by Fr. Sean McManus, Chief Judge of the World Peace Prize and President of the Capitol Hill-based Irish National Caucus/Irish Peace Foundation.
Fr. McManus explained: “The late, great President Trumka, God rest him, on February 3, 2016, at his AFL-CIO Headquarters, helped us to launch the World Peace Prize throughout the AFL-CIO and American Organized Laborhttps://worldpeaceprizewashington.org/
He also had agreed to receive the World Peace Prize For Solidarity before his death. So, in loving memory, we have re-named the Solidarity Prize in his honor. In his memory, we also refer to Organized Labor as “Organized Love of Neighbor”—for without social justice there is no love of neighbor.
We hope, as long planned, that the Trumka Family will be posthumously presented at this event with the World Peace Prize for Solidarity (which President Trumka had agreed to receive).
 
The re-naming of the Solidarity Prize has been warmly welcomed by the Trumka Family:’’ “… We are honored that Rich’s name will live on, always linked with solidarity and peace because the World Peace Prize for Solidarity will be re-named in his honor…”
President Liz Shuler, AFL-CIO, said: “Rich Trumka’s contributions to peace and prosperity around the world were countless. He was a global ambassador for worker rights, economic justice, dignity, and respect for all human beings. I can think of no one more deserving of this honor.”
And International President Cecil E. Roberts, United Mine Workers of America, and life-long friend of President Trumka, said: “I wish that he were still with us to accept this award, but our memories of him remain and guide us to continue to work for peace in his absence.”
(President Roberts, as announced some time ago, had agreed to receive the re-named “Richard L. Trumka World Peace Prize for Solidarity” but he had to keep postponing it due to his overwhelming schedule and duties. He still hopes to receive the Prize sometime in the future, and in the meantime, he graciously gave his blessing for us to move ahead with our programs).
 
General President Christensen, himself, said: “I saw President Trumka not only as a great leader but also as a dear friend. I am profoundly honored and humbled to receive this Prize, which is also a great honor for the IUEC and for all working women and men. We will certainly do all in our power to ensure that President Trumka’s name, as the Trumka family puts it, ‘will live on, always linked with solidarity and peace because the World Peace Prize for Solidarity will be re-named in his honor…’ This is our sacred trust because connecting American Labor with the World Peace Prize is a key and integral part of President Trumka’s legacy to Labor and, indeed, to the world.”
 
Fr. Mc Manus concluded: “As Chief Judge of the World Peace Prize, let me add this: Both President Trumka and General President Christensen have shown profound and wholehearted understanding and appreciation of the World Peace Prize making an intrinsic link between Organized Labor and the World Peace Prize (which is the only Peace Prize to make this inherent connection). Such understanding and appreciation are an essential part of the criterion we use to select Laureates of the World Peace Prize.
Both President Trumka and President Christensen deeply believed with Saint Pope John Paul II that ‘peace is the fruit of solidarity.’
 
Faith must be ‘the faith that does justice” as all religions in the world must believe. And the wonderful thing about social justice—the heart and soul of our World Peace Prize—is that people of faith and people of no faith, but of goodwill, can fully agree that social justice is absolutely essential for any decent society and world. Without justice, there is no love.”

MS. SHELLYE DAVIS’ STATEMENT

Executive Vice President Davis said: “I am profoundly honored, humbled, and blessed to accept this World Peace Prize award of ‘Roving Ambassador for Peace. ‘It is great to receive an award of this magnitude on behalf of all those who have stood with me on this journey.  Words cannot begin to translate what this means to me personally. But I try to be a beacon of light and hope for those who fight for equality and justice day after day. We all deserve to be treated fairly and have a seat at the table. I have made every attempt possible to be a voice for others who have been silenced. 
 
I believe social justice is a key component to achieve peace. I have seen firsthand that solidarity is ‘a must’ to stimulate justice.  No matter what part we play, just as every knit in a sweater is equally important, we can only make an impact together. As I child, I was fortunate to have loving parents, Vernal Davis and Alice Davis, who were advocates for education and being of service to others.  They instilled in me the mantra: ‘We do what we can when we can.’  When others have done all they can, we pick up the mantle and carry it because as it stated in 1 Corinthians 13:13, NKJV:’- And now abide faith, hope and love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.’ 
 
I have faith that we can do it. I work with the hope that together we can change any injustice.  When I see an opportunity to be of service, I do it in love because I know it will make a difference.  Our future depends on being active and present now. I am deeply grateful to Fr. Sean McManus and Barbara Flaherty— also a Judge on the Awarding Council and Chairperson of the World Peace Prize Presentation Ceremony— for this World Peace Prize award.”