The mission of the Institute for
Peace Studies in Eastern Christianity, Inc., is to conduct research,
educate, and offer consultancy to educators, policymakers, and religious
leaders in exploring and implementing methods of peacemaking emerging from
the traditions of Eastern Christianity.
After the end of the Cold War, religion became
increasingly associated with death and destruction. From intellectuals to
the common folk, people viewed religion as the main source of aggression,
intolerance and divisiveness. Facing difficult questions about Orthodox
Christianity, Dr. Marian Simion ascertained that this subject was
completely overlooked by the Orthodox seminaries and schools of theology.
Therefore, he established IPSEC to help fill this gap. The vision which Dr.
Simion set for IPSEC was to focus on research, education, and consulting
from a multidisciplinary perspective, simply because religion permeates all
aspects of human life, and religious peacemaking can only become effective
if taking a holistic and process-oriented approach.
Created in the spring of 2008, the Institute for Peace
Studies in Eastern Christianity (IPSEC) was incorporated in Massachusetts on March 27, 2009. On April 9, 2009 the Internal Revenue Service assigned
IPSEC the Employer Identification Number 26-4633958, and the institute was
inaugurated on July 2, 2009 in Bucharest Romania. On December 15, 2013,
IPSEC became a tax deductible 501(c)(3) entity under the U.S. Internal
Revenue Code, Section 170. Partnering with various organizations such as
the World Council of Churches (Switzerland), the Institute for Theology and
Peace (Germany), the Romanian Orthodox Patriarchate (Romania), the Greek
Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch (Syria), the Association for Freedom and
Conscience (Romania), the Parliament of Romania, and others, IPSEC
successfully completed several projects including two international expert
consultations in Romania (Bucharest, 2009) and Syria (Damascus, 2010), one
international workshop during the International Ecumenical Peace
Convocation in Jamaica (Kingston, 2011), and others. IPSEC published two
scholarly books in partnership with World Council of Churches and with the
Boston Theological Institute, and has established partnerships with the Faculties
of Orthodox Theology of “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iasi, of “Babeș-Bolyai” University of Cluj-Napoca, as well as with the Business School of the Athenaeum University of Bucharest, Romania. In 2014 IPSEC became
affiliated with Harvard Divinity School as a field education agency site.