Planned Day of Atonement Actions



The Des Moines (IA) Catholic Work and the Des Moines chapter of Veterans for Peace are calling on people to join them on the steps in front of St. Ambrose Cathedral for an hour-long vigil starting at 11 a.m. in solidarity with the national “Call to Action: A Day of Atonement” at places of worship.

Information: Frank Cordaro – Des Moines Catholic Worker – (515) 490-2490


Pax Christi Greensburg will hold a vigil beginning at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, October 7, 2021 on the sidewalk in front of Blessed Sacrament Cathedral, 310 North Main St, Greensburg, PA.

Pax Christi members will then enter the Greensburg Cathedral on their knees for the 11:45 a.m. daily Mass during which it is expected to hear prayed by the celebrant

The Eucharist of Gospel Nonviolence

Peace witnesses of all or no faith tradition — and not just Pax Christi Catholics — are invited to the vigil, bearing appropriate signs such as photos of the recent drone killing of 10 members of the Ahmadi family in Kabul, Afghanistan.

Information:  Fr. Bernard Survil, Priest of the Diocese of Greensburg, (ret.)

Ph  724-523-0291


Stephen V. Kobasa and Reclaiming the Prophetic Voice will remember the cost of the continuing violence in Iraq and Afghanistan and elsewhere in the Middle East and Africa by placing the September stone on the Memorial Cairn at the intersection of Broadway, Elm and Park Streets in New Haven on Thursday, October 7 at 6 pm. Each stone in the cairn represents one month that has passed since the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan began. On each stone is a record of the deaths, civilian and military, reported during that month.


On Oct. 7, Paul Welch, Director of Social Justice for the Catholic Diocese of Syracuse, has arranged for people to gather at 11:30 a.m. at Columbus Circle in front of the Cathedral, where three speakers will address drones, war and nuclear weapons.  At 12:15 pm, they will walk a block to Plymouth United Methodist Church in Christ to discuss racism and islamophobia. In conclusion, they will visit an Episcopal church to talk about ways in which military activity adds to the climate emergency.

Information: Paul Welch – (315) 256-8613


On Oct. 7th, at 11 a.m., members of Pax Christi New York City will hand out leaflets (see below) at St. Patrick’s Cathedral. At noon they will join the march commemorating the start of the Afghanistan war, organized by the War Resisters League, starting at noon at the New York Public Library at Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street and continuing across 42nd Street to the Times Square Recruiting Station until 1:30 p.m.


On Oct. 9th, at their weekly North Country vigil, Long Island peace activists will hold a “Fly Kites not Drones” action in solidarity with the 10/7 actions.


A Binghamton Veterans For Peace and Peace Action team will hold an event at three local places of worship on October 7 starting at 11 a.m.: St. Patrick’s Church, 9 Leroy St.; then to Tabernacle United Methodist Church on 83 Main St.; and on to Temple Concord on 9 Riverside Drive.  Participants will hold photos of the Ahmadi family and signs encouraging religious leaders to openly oppose the “Over the Horizon” drone attack plan and fear-mongering by the media, arms industry and U.S. government against China.


Jim Clune, President of Broome County Peace Action, has written an opinion article in the Binghamton Press & Sun Bulletin ending with a call to be at local churches on 10/7.


Members of the Ithaca Catholic Worker are sponsoring a multi-denominational event:

A Day of Atonement, the 20th anniversary of the beginning of the War on Terror,

Thursday, October 7th at 10:30 a.m. in DeWitt / Sean Greenwood Park for a short procession with Buddhist drumming, and for an

11 a.m. press conference. We are joining other witnesses nationwide observing the Day of Atonement.

We will mourn the suffering and loss of life caused by the 20-year occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq by the U. S. and call on the faith communities to end the silence on U.S. endless wars.

We also oppose the continuation of war-making by the weaponized drone program, “Over the Horizon” used anywhere in the world, the increased emphasis on militaristic solutions for conflict with China, and the nuclear weapons build-up. War is still not the answer.

Contact: Mary Anne Grady Flores


On Sunday, October 10, zool Zulkowitz will vigil at a Congregational church with a banner: “Tax Dollars for Kids Daycare, Not for Killer Drones”


Peace and Justice Works rally on Friday, October 8th.

20 Years Later, the Afghan War
is Not Really Over
Friday, October 8, 2021 5:00 – 6 PM
at the Weekly Friday Rally for Peace and Justice
Pioneer Courthouse Square, SW Yamhill and Broadway
please mask up and stay distanced for safety

On Friday, October 8, Peace and Justice Works Iraq Affinity group will mark the 20th anniversary of the beginning of the US war on Afghanistan with a specially themed Friday Rally for Peace and Justice at 5 PM. Titled “20 Years Later, the Afghan War is Not Really Over,” the event will call attention to the ongoing US presence near and announced intentions to continue warfare in Afghanistan with an “over the horizon” military force. As usual the rally will last until about 5:20 PM followed by a short march around downtown Portland. PJW asks participants to wear masks and stay distanced for COVID safety.


A Day of Atonement for the War in Afghanistan

October 7th, 2021

On August 26th, as the U.S. was withdrawing troops from Afghanistan, along with some Afghan allies, a suicide bomb detonated, killing 13 U.S. soldiers and nearly 100 Afghans, while wounding an additional 200 Afghan civilians. Within hours, our proudly Catholic President Biden proclaimed, “We will not forgive. We will not forget. We will hunt you down and make you pay.”

The very next day, a U.S. drone responded. The U.S. military claimed precision targeting of two ISIS-K terrorists, but witnesses on the ground reported seeing wounded children and women, as well as three dead—one man, one boy, and one woman. Then, two days later, another U.S. drone killed a family of 10, including seven young children. The father of the family worked for a California-based humanitarian organization. All were hoping for a visa to escape Afghanistan. In short, they were innocent allies, not enemies.

These incidents make it clear that warfare, especially drone warfare, is neither precise nor just. Religious leaders of many faiths, including the Catholic faith, have stated firmly that drones not only dehumanize warfare, they breed trauma among ordinary civilians and new enemies eager to retaliate with deadly force. The sanitized distancing between the attacker and the attacked actually increases the likelihood of more war.1 Such assaults totally violate such Christian teachings as, “Love your enemies” and “Forgive not seven times, but seventy times seven times.” They deny human dignity and the right to due process before sentencing. Even some military officers have admitted the high percentage of unintended, innocent victims of drone attacks.2

Instead of resorting to more and more bloodshed, we choose to heed the words of Pope Francis:

“I ask everyone to continue to assist those in need, and to pray that dialogue and solidarity may lead to the establishment of peaceful and fraternal coexistence, and offer hope for the future of the country [Afghanistan].” He added that “in historical moments like this we cannot remain indifferent.” For Christians it is a duty to respond.

Pope Francis reasoned, “I appeal to everyone to intensify prayer and practice fasting: prayer and fasting, prayer and penance. Now is the time to do it.”

He continued emphatically, “I’m serious: Intensify prayer and practice fasting, asking the Lord for mercy and forgiveness.”3

It is for these reasons that we have been called to observe this day as A Day of Atonement. Please join us., and please share with others.




Also see additional background reading:

And sign the petition to Ban Killer Drones here:

This leaflet prepared for Pax Christi New York State,

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