A lifelong peacemaker, Johann Christoph Arnold embodies Gandhi’s famed dictum, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Born in 1940 to war resisters driven out of Nazi Germany, his parents fled Europe when he was a baby and settled in Paraguay. His childhood of poverty gave him a special sensitivity for the down-trodden. At fourteen, Arnold moved to New York, where he has lived ever since. In the 1960s, his interest in the Civil Rights Movement led him to go South, where he met and marched with Martin Luther King Jr. The ensuing friendship was to impact him for life.

Today, Christoph and his wife Verena are the parents of eight children and have forty one grandchildren; he is also a popular speaker on behalf of children. A best-selling author, Arnold’s sound advice has helped his books sell over 350,000 copies. An outspoken social critic, he has addressed gatherings from Sydney to London to Berlin, and visited hotspots around the globe. Locally, his work has taken him into hospitals, nursing homes, juvenile detention centers and prisons. In 2007 he was appointed chaplain of the Ulster County Sheriff’s Department.

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