Study guide: an introduction

I’m John Steward, a volunteer in the amazing Royal Botanic Gardens at Cranbourne, south of Melbourne. After completing Honours degree studies in both agriculture and divinity, and a PhD in soil science, I’ve lived overseas for twelve years in Asia and Africa. I also travelled widely visiting projects of World Vision and training their community development workers from over fifty countries.

Since 1997 my focus has been on monitoring change and progress in Rwanda,  mentoring some Rwandan peacebuilders who’ve led healing and personal recovery efforts after the genocide. I lived there in 1997-98, then returned every six months for nine years.

I came to know a few of the people who had begun journeys of change and some of them became my friends. Their stories are like a pool of sanity in a world gone mad. Five years ago I some of them asked me to write their experiences so all the world could know you can recover from terrible times. Published in 2015, From Genocide to Generosity is available online, from Koorong books, by print-on-demand, e-book, PDF or direct from the publisher – Langham Global, UK.

Their work for change can inspire us that all is not lost.

 To Live Well and to Do Well

In 2016 From Genocide to Generosity won “Best book on Grief and Grieving published by an independent publisher”. I realized the message of the book is far more than that and chose to develop To Live Well And To Do Well. It is a study guide for small groups to gain personal insight from the amazing stories in the book. It is intended for a general audience of all ages, starting with young adults.

I am seeking people with a passion for peace, those who will find ways to try the study guide and recommend it to others. I am also depending on the wider community of peacemakers to test the value of this work for their audiences and to give me feedback on what they learn.

The Study Guide

There are ten parts to this study guide and for each part there is at least one video to watch. If you’re planning to use this study guide with a small group, please see the Facilitators Guide.

The ten sessions are:-

1. Group Practice

2. Telling My Story

3. Practice Of Grief

4. Grief & Feelings

5. Valuing Feelings

6. Expressing Emotions

7. Twelve Steps Of Forgiveness

8. Practise Of Forgiveness

9. Justice & Generosity

10. Make Peace If You Can

I believe that the practice of healing and forgiveness is more likely to make human development a success, than in its absence. And conflict is not just negative for relationship, but also for productivity.

Dr John Steward