Catholic peacemaker receives Mother Teresa Award

Heidi Kuhn

US-based Catholic peacemaker Heidi Kuhn has been honoured with this year’s prestigious Mother Teresa Memorial Award for Social Justice for her tireless efforts in transforming war-torn areas plagued by landmines.

Over the last 25 years Kuhn’s humanitarian organisation, Roots of Peace, has turned war-damaged areas into sustainable agricultural land in 11 countries.

Abraham Mathai, founder-chairman of the Harmony Foundation, lauded Kuhn’s work – “Heidi Kuhn’s work through Roots of Peace perfectly embodies the spirit of the Mother Teresa Memorial Awards.”

The accolade, presented by the voluntary group based in Mumbai, India was bestowed upon Kuhn on November 26.

Mathai told UCA News that Kuhn was a remarkable example of ‘humanity in action’.

Expressing gratitude upon receiving the award, Kuhn emphasised Roots of Peace’s mission to foster peace through agriculture, prioritising the ‘shovel’ over the ‘sword’.

Quoting Saint Mother Teresa, Kuhn underscored the significance of small actions performed with great love, stating “Not all of us can do great things, but we may do small things with great love.”

‘Mines into Vines’

Kuhn illustrated the transformative power of her work, asserting that the act of removing a landmine and planting a fruit tree constitutes an act of peace.

The activist said “As bombs fall from the sky in so many nations, we as humans must fall to our knees, kiss the ground and plant a flower, a tree or even an orchard, in an act of solidarity to heal the wounds of war.”

Roots of Peace, established in 1997, has successfully converted ‘mines into vines’ in conflict-stricken regions such as Afghanistan, Angola, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Palestine. The work by the non-profit organisation has had a positive impact on more than a million farmers.

Earlier this year Heidi Kühn was also awarded the 2023 World Food Prize, an international award recognising the achievements of individuals who have advanced human development by improving the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world.


UCA News

Roots of Peace


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News category: World.

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