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  • Kathy Shimpock

"Peace pilgrim" (1908-1981) Peace is in Every Step!

During these days of uncertainty, many women seek strong, positive, wise and vital examples of aging.  Fortunately, such role models exist. These women embody the character of the wise old woman archetype. Their lives provide inspiration and guidance for the darkest of days. The Peace Pilgrim is one of these women. There are many more; we only have to open our eyes to see them.

There is a feeling of always being surrounded by all the good things, like love and peace and joy. It seems like a protective surrounding, and there is an unshakeableness within, which takes you through any situations you need to face….There is a calmness and a serenity and unhurriedness - no more striking or straining.  The Peace Pilgrim speaking of her pilgrimage.

Beginning on January 1, 1953, Mildred Lisette Norman, adopted the name "Peace Pilgrim" and walked across the United States for 28 years, covering over 25,000 miles. Throughout her travels, she spoke with others about peace. She said, "When enough of us find inner peace, our institutions will become peaceful and there will be no more occasion for war.” She was on her seventh cross-country journey when she died in an automobile accident.  The Peace Pilgrim continues to inspire as an example of what one person can do to change the mind and hearts of others. "This is the Way of Peace: overcome evil with good, falsehood with truth, and hatred with love."

Journal questions:

  1. Older women are often thought to be “invisible.” Do you think the Peace Pilgrim was invisible? How did she make her presence known?

  2. What are you “called” to do for others?

  3. Do you think peace becomes more important as we grow older? If so, why?

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