Stassen receives human rights award

Glen Stassen, the Lewis B. Smedes Professor of Christian Ethics at Fuller Theological Seminary in California in the United States, was presented with the 2013 Denton and Janice Lotz Human Rights Award during the Annual Gathering of the Baptist World Alliance® (BWA) in Jamaica.

The award is given for significant and effective activities to secure, protect, restore or preserve human rights as stated in the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other declarations on human rights. The honor was conferred during a meeting of the General Council, a governing body of the BWA that convened during the Gathering, which is being held from July 1-6.

Stassen was recognized for his longtime role as a peace activist. He was lauded as the foremost proponent of the globally recognized just peacemaking theory in matters of war and conflict and was hailed as "arguably the leading Baptist peace theorist-activist of the twentieth century" whose "influence is felt well beyond the confines of the Baptist family."

He was described as a fearless advocate who, for more than 50 years, engaged religious communities, civil society and governments in human rights, justice and peacemaking issues and who engaged in nonviolent campaigns for peace and human rights in countries such as the former East Germany, Kazakhstan and South Korea, and regions such as Central America, Eastern Europe and Southern Africa.

Declared as a tireless campaigner who participated in anti-nuclear campaigns across the world and negotiated the disarming and removal of short and middle range nuclear weapons from Europe, he led organizations such as the Strategy Committee of the Nuclear Weapons Freeze Campaign and the Arms Race and the International Conflict Committee of the Louisville Area Council on Peacemaking.

Stassen, the citation said, is an outstanding intellectual, a respected mentor and a committed Baptist Christian. He has led and held membership in a wide ranging number of academic, peacemaking, and denominational institutions and organizations, including the BWA where, over a number of decades, he has held membership on various commissions, including the Commission on Peace.

Baptist World Alliance®
© July 5, 2013