URI and the UN's International Day of Peace - 2015

20 September 2015, 1:07 PM
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Two children plant a tree in honor of IDP 2015 - with members from Interfaith Peace Building on Natural Resources Management CC

See how the URI community throughout the world is celebrating the International Day of Peace 2015. Please check back soon - this page is being updated with stories and photos from all URI International Day of Peace activities as more reports come in! We'd love to hear from you - please send us photos and reports of your own IDP celebrations at communications@uri.org

Read an International Day of Peace message from URI Executive Director Victor Kazanjian.


Skip directly to IDP 2015 celebrations from: 

Southeast Asia and the Pacific

Asia

Latin America and the Caribbean

Europe

Multiregion

Middle East and North Africa

North America

Africa


 

Hear UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's message for International Day of Peace.

Join with people throughout the world to add your prayers for peace at 12 noon local time with a Minute of Silence. Then you can send the message --May Peace Prevail on Earth! on #peaceday and #MayPeacePrevailOnEarth 

Happy International Day of Peace!

May Peace Prevail on Earth,
Monica Willard
URI United Nations Representative
International Day of Peace (September 21) 
NGO Committee, Co-chair


 

UNITED NATIONS IDP 2015 CELEBRATION

URI Representative to the United Nations Monica Willard shares a report and photos from the UN celebration of the International Day of Peace 2015. See the full report and photos here.

 


 

   

LOCATION: Cambodia

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Interfaith Peace Building on Natural Resources Management

Dear URI friends,

Alliance for Conflict Transformation (ACT) would like to share with your our Interfaith event we conducted on the 16th of September, 2015, in Cambodia.

Theme: Interfaith Peace Walk on International Day of Peace

Action: peace walk, interfaith sharing, tree planting, and interfaith prayer for nature. 

The interfaith network in Kampong Chhnang province conducted the Interfaith Peace Walk on the International Day of Peace. It focused on natural resources management through tree planting in Traneam Pech village, Kok Banteay commune, Rolea Pbear district, and Kampong Chhnang province. The program for promoting and raising awareness on interfaith peace building concerned the environment in the local community. The activities aim to: celebrate international peacebuilding incorporating peace and human dignity, promote understanding and building capacity for the community for conflict resolution, promote the importance of natural resource through planting trees in the communities and building relationships between authorities and communities, especially interfaith people living together in communities. There were 100 participants including 27 ladies, the chief of the village, representatives of communes, the chief of community forestry, teachers, monks, youth, police, children, and religious leaders. The community faces issues such as discrimination among diverse faiths (Buddhism, Christian, and Muslim) and deforestation.

Read the full description of the event here.

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PLANTING TREES
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See more photos here.

Sotheavy Srey, Director, Alliance for Conflict Transformation

Interfaith Peace Building on Natural Resources Management

 


LOCATION: Bohol, The Philippines

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Bohol Goodwill Volunteers CC

I wish you all a meaningful International Day of Peace! My CC had a joint celebration with members of a few other groups in our small city.

- Ludwig Quirog Regional Coordinator, URI Southeast Asia and the Pacific - Central Zone

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LOCATION: Cambodia

Greetings from Cambodia and wishing you all a meaningful International Day of Peace.

URI Cambodia, this year, in partnership with Working Group for Peace and many other interfaith and peace-building organisations, organized a peace reflection workshop.

The whole theater filled with joy and was proud to be part of the solution - not part of the problem.

Sothearwat Seoung, Regional Coordinator for URI Southeast Asia and the Pacific - West Zone

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LOCATION: Melbourne, Australia

COOPERATION CIRCLES: Women's Interfaith Network of the URI CC

Over 130 attendees from various religious, faith and human rights groups attended the event. Faith representatives made religious offerings from their faiths. Some touched on the role of education towards peace and initiatives within their faith groups towards world peace.

Read the full report here.

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LOCATION: Seoul, Republic of Korea

COOPERATION CIRCLES: URI Korea and other Korea CCs

Greetings of peace and compassion from Korea!  Thank you for reminding and working on IDP events with the UNSG's message.

We URI Korea had held a Peace Forum to commemorate the IDP in downtown Seoul last Tuesday with the message.

I sent my message in Korean with the UNSG's last Saturday to thousands members and friends of URI Korea by e-mails and website.

Yesterday as the eve of IDP, we joined the joint events of GO and NGOs of Korea for IDP at Hangang Park in Seoul, as attached photos shows.

Today on IDP, we had a Minute of Silence with prayer for world peace at noon to take a part in networking around the globe.

May peace prevail on Earth!

Dr. Jinwol Lee, URI Asia's Regional Coordinator for Korea

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LOCATION: Matuail, Jatrabari, Dhaka, Bangladesh.

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Deeplaid Religion Society (DRS) of Bangladesh

We are hosting “Health For Peace” for about 300 people on 25 Dec-2015. People of all religions are invited to participate. Ln. Habibur Rahman, Managing Director of Deeplaid Pharmaco Ltd., will be a special guest. Through this event, we want to ensure the health of underprivileged people.

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LOCATION: Lahore, Pakistan

COOPERATION CIRCLE: A Better Community for All (ABC4ALL) Pakistan

Congratulations International Day of Peace 2015!

The Celebration of International Day of Peace was held at the Central Cathedral Praying Hand Church, in Lahore, Pakistan on the 20th of September 2015, Sunday Service. My family and Cooperation Circle members attended the celebration. Mr. Aquel Khan, program officer of A Better Community for All (ABC4ALL) Pakistan Cooperation Circle, read the scripture from the Holy Bible. 

Peace songs were sung by the choir and congregation. Rev. Emmanuel Khokhar gave a thrilling message on PEACE and the role of creating peace and harmony with other religions, expressing the theme of IDP 2015 - PARTNERSHIPS FOR PEACE - DIGNITY FOR ALL. Prayers were offered for World Peace and Peace in Pakistan. 

I shared that we all must share at least One Minute of Silence at 12:00 pm whereever we are, and pray for peace, also expressing the reflections of the IDP 2015 message of Ban-Ki- Moon, Secretary General of the United Nations. 

I call all warring parties to lay down their weapons and observe a global ceasefire. To them I say: stop the killings and the destruction, and create space for lasting peace. Ban-Ki-Moon also talked on this topic of GLOBAL UNITY. With the “11 Days 11 Themes” project, as started from September 2015 for a peaceful society around you, all congregation appreciated the celebration of the International Day of Peace. The theme of Global Unity is to be continued not just on a Peace Day celebration only.

Peace May Peace Prevail in Pakistan!
May Peace Prevail on Earth!

Yuel Bhatti, Executive Secretary, United Religions Initiative Pakistan

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See more photos at ABC4ALL Pakistan CC's facebook page


LOCATION: Lahore, Pakistan

Greetings of peace! 

The International Day of Peace was celebrated at Peace Center, Lahore on 28th of September, 2015 (We postponed it from 21st September due to heavy rains). There were around 100 participants from Muslim, Christian, Hindu and Baha'i communities.

The program started with releasing of doves and balloons in the air.  

The video message of Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary General was read, speeches were made on the challenges of violence, arms races and the lack of interreligious harmony. The speakers admired the message of Ban Ki-moon, peace songs and Video presentations were done. There was also a launching ceremony of the book of Rev. Dr. Marcus Fida called "Shehr-e-Amn" (City of Peace), and there was a distribution of Peace Awards for the outstanding promoters of peace and harmony from different religions and organizations. There was also a candle light ceremony.

All present committed to carry the mission of interfaith dialogue and peace with youth, women’s groups, religious leaders and especially at grassroots levels. 

This IDP was presided over by: His Grace Sebastian Shaw, Archbishop of Lahore; and Chief Guest, Mr. Khalil Tahir Sandhu, Provincial Minister for Human Rights and Minorities Affairs.

Guests of Honor included:

Mualana Abdul Khabir Azad, Grand Imam of Badshahi Mosque Lahore; Allama Zubair Abid, Bishop Alwin Samuel, Pir Shafaat Rasoo, Syed Nao Bahar Shah, Dr. Knwal Feroze, and Mr. Sohail Ahmed Raza.

This program was jointly organized by the Peace Center, URI Pakistan, Global Mission Awareness and Catholic Commission for Interreligious Dialogue and Ecumenism. 

The hosts were: Fr James Channan OP, Rev. Dr. Marqus Fida, and Mr. Javaid William. 

There was a good number of both electronic and press media.

The program ended with supper.

May Peace Prevail On Earth!

In peace,

fr James Channan OP

URI Regional Coordinator Pakistan

Director, Peace Center, Lahore

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LOCATION: Chennai, India

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Association for Interfaith Dialogue & Action

Kiran Bali, URI Global Council Chairperson, describes her experiences at the Peace Day celebrations in Chennai with Association for Interfaith Dialogue and Action CC. Read the full story and see more photos here.

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LOCATION: India

COOPERATION CIRCLES: Kasturba Balika Vidyalaya CCSarvodaya Bundelkhand CCSamagra Vikash CC

Subhi Dhupar, India North Zone Cooperation Circle Liaison Officer, shares reports from International Day of Peace 2015 celebrations in India’s North Zone, which drew attention to women's empowerment and education, and to protecting the environment. They organized scholastic competitions for schoolgirls belonging to under-privileged sections of society, and distributed useful plants to raise environmental awareness. See the full report here.

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More details from Kasturba Balika Vidyalaya CC:

International Day of Peace was celebrated by the Kasturba CC in the hostel premises by 200 students and staff members on 21st September, 2015. The programme started with the interfaith prayer by the students. Students and staff members gave their valuable suggestions in a group discussion as to how peace can be established in the universe. How can peace be established through the principles of non-violence which were given by the father of Nation Mahatma Gandhi to the entire world? Some students also gave their opinions about how peace should be started from school, home, and by oneself. Some students discussed the problem in Syria and prayed for peace. A two-minute silence was observed for peace in all the terrorism-stricken countries and the people of Nepal. A Candle Mrach was organized on the occasion of the peace day by the participants. 

We also organized a painting competition to commemorate this occasion. People actively participated in this programme, making it a huge success.

May Peace prevail on this earth…. may all live with love, peace and brotherhood

Parveen Yadav

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LOCATION: India (North Zone)

We Cooperation Circles from North India Five States celebrated the IDP in a manner, we celebrate every moment every day. IDP is a day to analyse our services and support the underprivileged and needy to the extent of our satisfaction in life, right from childhood. We all CCs serve humanity up to the level we can with our own resources and find the results by getting all those who are needy to live a normal life.

We think that a section of the society is not satisfied or can’t afford some requirements to be in peace. Those should be fulfilled by the process of volunteer service by different CCs members with the resources they can afford. In our different centers, around six hundred children in the category of orphans, differently able, senior citizens, needy older people, and leprosy patients.

We feel, when these categories are served to the extent with the normal people, then these can be achieved without hatred and violence.

And we feel, if a good percentage of these people are rehabilitated at the grassroots level, then the whole society is in peace. We all on the International Day of Peace self-analyse our work by conferences, dialogue, and meetings with all categories of society, and we review our actions.

In the last fourteen years, under the banner of URI North Zone India and by working strictly on the principals of URI, we have achieved the results which are clearly known to the public and transparently observed.

Our works, actions, and way of works are being checked by the URI central office, global office, and zonal office by visiting our institutions time to time.

We seek a kind moral support for our institutions in North India, so that we can fulfill the aims and objective of making peace in the world.

A Better World Is Possible!

Gagan Kumar, correspondent of URI North Zone Five States


LOCATION: Pakistan

COOPERATION CIRCLE: BETHAK-Pakistan

BETHAK organization, Khanewal conducted a dialogue meeting on the International Day for Peace on partnership for peace and dignity for all.

Read the full report.

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LOCATION: India

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Atman: the Samuhaa

Subhi Dhupar, India North Zone Cooperation Circle Liaison Officer, shares reports from International Day of Peace 2015 celebrations in India’s North Zone, where one of the region's newest Cooperation Circles honored the occasion through a gathering of women and sharing of hymns across caste and class lines. See the full report here.

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LOCATION: Delhi, India

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Chetna Educational Society CC

The Cooperation Circle Chetna Educational Society Delhi has celebrated the International Day of Peace with four hundred school students. On this occasion, Society organised an essay writing competition and distributed their merit certificate. On this occasion, I delivered a message about URI and its objectives for peace building. A number of teachers gave speeches about the importance of this day.

With regards,

Deokant Mishra

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LOCATION: India

COOPERATION CIRCLES: Nirmala Deshpande Sansthan, Panipat

On the occasion of the International Day of Peace, a drawing and essay competition was organised among students of Nirmala Deshpande Sansthan Panipat (a Cooperation Circle of URI in North India) in which 54 students participated. Mr. Sadanand Biswas, Regional Coordinator of United Religions Initiative India, was the chief guest. Mr. Biswas said, while addressing the gathering, that the main object of Indian culture and values is to serve the humanity of the world and for world peace. Women are not only the centre of the peace, but creators of humanity and they have a pioneering and important role in establishing peace on the earth. Our elders and saints always treat this world as one family and always wish welfare and peace amongst all through peaceful and non-violent means.

On this occasion 7 winning students among 54 were awarded with certificates and prizes and sweets were distributed among other present students.

In the program, Mr. Ram Mohan Rai, CC coordinator, Laureate Ramesh Puhal, Social activists Ms. Sunita Anand, Ashu Kapoor, Rosy Chawla, Divya Singh, Dinakshi, Beena Bharti, Seema Rani, Neelam, Sugndha, Tripti and Mehak were prominent, among others.

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LOCATION: South India

From Abraham Karickam, Regional Coordinator, India, South Zone, please enjoy these videos of URI South India's International Day of Peace 2015 Peace Rally.


LOCATION: Maharashtra, India

COOPERATION CIRCLE: PEACE (Peace Education Association & Centre for Excellence)

PEACE CC organized a 'Piece for Peace' activity as part of the UN Peace Day celebration. 

"The activity was enthusiastically attended by the children and the youth studying in different schools and colleges. They wrote, painted and conveyed their thoughts on their understanding of the Theme 'Our world is One Family' the literal meaning of 'VasudaivaKutumbakam.'"

See the full report here.

Dear brothers and sisters of the URI staff family:

Happy International Day of Peace. God bless your steps on the Mother Earth and all the work you are doing to help our organization to build a culture of peace in the world. That seems to be the most important challenge at this moment of our human history.

I send you my love and respect, 

Dra. Enoé Texier, Coordinadora Regional de la Iniciativa para las Religiones Unidas, (URI) América Latina & El Caribe


A message from Mr. Ciro Gabriel Avruj, URI Global Council Trustee:

(Misiones Unidas CC and Humanity’s Team - Argentina)

Dear community of peacemakers,

We are preparing to celebrate the International Day of Peace this September 21. Through www.netspirit.tv we will be part of a great global event. See it: https://youtu.be/TWQ7awoe7Gg

LOCATION: Santiago, Chile

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Santiago Spiritual Forum for Peace

An Interreligious Celebration on the International Day of Peace

 (September 21, 2015; Santiago, Chile)

This September 21, the Spiritual Forum for Peace Santiago called for the fourteenth consecutive year an interfaith prayer service to mark the International Day of Peace, open to all who wished to attend, held in the Auditorium of the College San Ignacio between 19:00 and 20:30. There, fifteen representatives of various religions and spiritual traditions that have active communities in Chile gathered to pray for peace. Sitting in a circle, they successively raised their prayers, according to the religious faith and tradition of each of the worshipers, to finish reading by all attendees a Declaration for Peace in the World. Among those who prayed were religious leaders and representatives of the Catholic Church, the Orthodox Church, the historic Protestant churches and the Pentecostal world, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Sikhism, the Baha'i faith, traditions Sufi spiritual and Mapuche, and Brahma Kumaris. The musical part was by the Choir of CEPAL.

This celebration was supported and sponsored by:

  • Fraternidad Ecuménica de Chile - FRAECH
  • Confraternidad Cristiana de Iglesias - CCI
  • Comisión Nacional de Ecumenismo y Diálogo Interreligioso
  • de la Conferencia Episcopal de Chile - CONEDI
  • Conferencia de Religiosos y Religiosas de Chile - CONFERRE
  • Oficina Nacional de Asuntos Religiosos, Gobierno de Chile - ONAR

FORUM MOTTO: "Peace is Love Made Coexistence"

(Peace declaration read in chorus by all participants)

DECLARATION FOR PEACE IN THE WORLD

We, representatives and members of different religions and spiritual traditions, have gathered today to witness our joint prayer with our commitment to the cause of peace and our desire to live in harmony, each respecting our choices of faith and looking for common ways, through dialogue, to build a more just, supportive and fraternal society.

In that spirit, we express our commitment to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; in particular its recognition of the equal dignity and rights of all human beings as well as the right of everyone to freedom of thought, conscience and religion.

In that same spirit we call on the members of our communities and, in general, to all men and women of Santiago and Chile --- whatever their origin, their beliefs, their profession, age or social status --- who work united in peace building.

The genuine and lasting world peace; a culture made and recorded as longing in the heart of every human being; peace solidly based on the structures of a new society; more just, united and harmonious than the current society; deeply respectful of human rights and life in all its manifestations; in which sharing is more important than competing, and the dialogue and agreements, replace all violent resolutions of conflicts.

We want the Third Millennium we are starting to be brighter than the last. We met terrible wars, genocide, colonialism, religious intolerance and persecution. We want for our generation and future generations a world where diversity of cultures and beliefs is valued and respected, a world of brothers and sisters reconcile with each other and with the Earth, a world where we can finally say that the peace we enjoy in our hearts, in our families and communities and between nations is largely the fruit of love made coexistence.

Building that peace is everyone's job. Together we can achieve.

September 21, 2015; Santiago, Chile

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ORIGINAL TEXT:

Sobre el Acto Interreligioso celebrando el Día Internacional de la Paz

(21 de Septiembre de 2015, en Santiago de Chile)

Este 21 de Septiembre, el Foro Espiritual de Santiago por la Paz convocó por décimo cuarto año consecutivo un acto interreligioso de oración para celebrar el Día Internacional de la Paz, abierto a todos quienes quisieran asistir, que se realizó en el Salón de Actos del Colegio San Ignacio entre las 19:00 y las 20:30 horas. Allí representantes de quince diversas religiones y tradiciones espirituales que tienen comunidades activas en Chile se reunieron a orar por la paz. Sentados en círculo, elevaran sucesivamente sus plegarias, conforme a la fe religiosa y tradición de cada uno de los orantes, para terminar leyendo junto a todos los asistentes una Declaración por la Paz en el Mundo. Entre quienes oraron había líderes religiosos y representantes de la Iglesia Católica, de la Iglesia Ortodoxa, de las iglesias protestantes históricas y del mundo pentecostal, del Judaísmo, del Islam, del Budismo, del Sikhismo, de la fe Bahá’í, de las tradiciones espirituales Sufi y del pueblo Mapuche, y de Brahma Kumaris. La parte musical estuvo a cargo del Coro de la CEPAL.

(Declaración por la paz leída en coro por todos los participantes en el acto)DECLARACION POR LA PAZ EN EL MUNDO

Nosotros, representantes y miembros de distintas religiones y tradiciones espirituales, nos hemos reunido hoy para testimoniar con nuestra oración conjunta nuestro compromiso con la causa de la paz y nuestra voluntad de vivir en armonía, respetando mutuamente nuestras opciones de fe y buscando a través del diálogo caminos comunes para construir una sociedad más justa, solidaria y fraternal. En ese espíritu, manifestamos nuestra adhesión a la Declaración Universal de los Derechos Humanos, en particular a su reconocimiento de la igualdad en dignidad y derechos de todos los seres humanos, así como del derecho de toda persona a la libertad de pensamiento, de conciencia y de religión. En ese mismo espíritu llamamos a los miembros de nuestras comunidades y, en general, a todos los hombres y mujeres de Santiago y de Chile ---cualquiera sea su origen, sus creencias, su profesión, edad o condición social--- a trabajar unidos en la construcción de la paz. el mundo una paz genuina y duradera, hecha cultura y grabada como anhelo en el corazón de cada ser humano; una paz sólidamente basada en las estructuras de una nueva sociedad, más justa, solidaria y armoniosa que la actual, profundamente respetuosa de los Derechos Humanos y de la Vida en todas sus manifestaciones, en la que compartir sea más importante que competir, y en la que el diálogo y los acuerdos sustituyan a toda forma violenta en la solución de los conflictos. Queremos que el Tercer Milenio que estamos iniciando sea más luminoso que el anterior, que conoció guerras terribles, genocidios, colonialismo, intolerancia y persecución religiosa. Queremos para nuestra generación y las generaciones futuras un mundo donde la diversidad de culturas y de creencias sea valorada y respetada, un mundo de hermanos y hermanas reconciliados entre sí y con la Tierra, un mundo donde por fin podamos decir que la paz que gozamos en nuestros corazones, en nuestras familias y comunidades y entre las naciones es en gran medida el fruto del amor hecho convivencia. Construir esa paz es tarea de todos. Unidos podemos lograrlo.

Santiago de Chile, 21 de Septiembre de 2015.

LOCATION: Helsinki, Finland

COOPERATION CIRCLES: Multiple

Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that.

Hate cannot drive hate: only love can do that.

                                                          Martin Luther King Jr.

Best greetings from St. Paul Church in Helsinki, where we had the Peace Prayer event today to celebrate the International Peace Day.

Many of the people who attended this prayer event, held at the Lutheran Church, were URI members from our URI Cooperation Circles.

There were people from Islam, Hinduism, Brahma Kumaris, Ananda Marga, Mother Amma-movement, Bahai-faith, and Christianity. 

Peace and all good!

Heidi Rautionmaa, former URI Global Council Trustee and European Executive Committee member

 


LOCATION: Dushanbe, Tajikistan

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Center for Peace and Dialogue of Cultures CC

21st September, in Dushanbe, we had a gathering where people (members and not members of our Cooperation Circle) had praying, singing, talking, and exchanging ideas on different important issues on Tajikistan and around the world. Since our Cooperation Circle links with Shahidi International Musical Foundation, we do promote among our members ideas on the essentiality of Culture, as a phenomenon that plays a major role in the peace-creating process. We had a group of young musicians, who had a very good performance.


LOCATION: Sanski Most, Bosnia and Herzegovina

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Youth for Peace

From the 16th until the 21st of September 2015, CIM (Centar za izgradnju mira / Center for Peacebuilding) organised the annual International Peace Week project in Sanski Most, Bosnia and Herzegovina. During this week they aimed to raise awareness of issues related to conflict and peace building by engaging our local community in a wide range of activities. They marked with lectures, activism workshops, art activities, concerts, and discussions. Project was supported by different local and international organizations including CRS (Catholic Relief Service) and KAS (Konrad Adenauer Foundation).

Read the full story and see more photos here.

 

LOCATIONBulgaria 

COOPERATION CIRCLE: BRIDGES “Eastern European Forum for Dialogue”

Dear URI Family,

There is a wonderful announcement for the International Day of Peace from Bulgaria:

Several URI Cooperation Circles from Bulgaria in joint efforts launched a new pilot course for the students of the Private College “Eastern European Educational Center” in Plovdiv and the new lecture course appeared as a printed book in Bulgarian under the title “UN: 70 Years of Service for Peace with Good Deeds” (author and editor Dr. Georgi Naydenov, one of the consultants of the edition is the URI Global Trustee Rev. Petar Gramatikov, publisher “Europress” – Plovdiv, ISBN: 978-954-9357, 131 pages).

The textbook gives a full analysis of the organigram of United Nations popularizing its international organizations and underlines the work of UN on the global scene during the last seven decades solving global problems trough policy of solidarity, diplomacy and other due legal instruments.

Resolution of the “Help the Needy Foundation” – Plovdiv and partner organizations (Media Center “EuroPress”, College “Eastern European Educational Center”, Centre for Ecumenical Dialogue “Saint Apostle Hermas” – all four CC of URI Europe, and other like-minded organizations) from May 2015, in concert with the 70th anniversary of the United Nations, and the 60 years since Bulgaria joined the UN family.

Unanimously accepted was the proposal to award all former UN Gen. Secretaries and Incumbent Secretary-General with the medal from the NGO-sector in Bulgaria “For People With Good Hearts” for their contribution and dedication to international peace and humanism.

May Peace Prevail on Earth,

Rev. Hierodeacon Petar Gramatikov

Global Council Trustee - United Religions Initiatives

 Vice-President of BRIDGES “Eastern European Forum for Dialogue”

Cooperation Circle of United Religions Initiatives (URI Europe)

LOCATION: Germany

COOPERATION CIRCLES: URI Germany CC (URI Deutschland CC)DMLBonn CC (Deutsche Muslim-Liga Bonn e.V)

In Bonn members of the DMLBonn CC, URI Germany CC and the Baha’i community Bonn celebrated UN International Day of Peace with an interfaith film evening on September 15, 2015. Baha’i, Catholic, Humanist, Muslim and Old Catholic activists came together. Starting with a delicious buffet evening snack, people had a chance to catch up with and get to know each other.

See the full report and more photos here.


LOCATION: Novosibirsk, and throughout Russia

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Euro-Asia CC

The 21st of September, which we know as the Day of Peace, is celebrated in the Russian Orthodox Church as the Birthday of the Mother of Jesus. They believe it to be the Great Day of the World Joy. We in Russia have double celebrations on this day, including a video story by Dmitriy Ofitserov, which told us about his very interesting volunteer participation in the World Initiative of Peace Road. “Three men in a car” decided to undertake a peaceful rally “Peace Road” through Russia, which is as long as 10,000klms.

Read the full story here: We All Are On Peace Road

LOCATION: Rome, Italy

Greetings of love and peace. Thank you for your encouragement.

On Sept 25th, celebrating the International Day of Peace, there was a Book Release and Presentation event on “Life and Its Origin: Exploration from Science and Spiritual Traditions” with 25 distinguished contributors including 2 Nobel Laureates, at Bibliothe, Rome.  

On Sept 26th, International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, we have prayed by reading out the prayers of both Bishop Swing ("A Prayer for Those Whose Hearts Carry the Weight of Nuclear Weapons") and Pope Francis at the end of the Seminar on Science and Spirituality, at Bibliothe, Rome. 

Appreciatively,

Vasudeva Rao

Trustee & Asst. Secretary, Global Council, United Religions Initiative, & President, Bhaktivedanta Institute


COOPERATION CIRCLES: Hope in Life Foundation

Hope in Life Foundation Cooperation Circle, in collaboration with American Women for International Understanding (AWIU) Los Angeles County Chapter, hosted a UN International Day of Peace event yesterday. We were honored to have Sari Heidenreich, URI Regional Coordinator for North America, with us.

Along with the United Nations and the global community, we observed the International Day of Peace this morning at the famous Rose Garden, Los Angeles, California. 21st September is observed as the day of non-violence and cease fire throughout the world.

Our guest of honor was Louis “Lou” Gossett, Jr., Oscar and Emmy Winner and Founder, President and Board Chair of the Louis Gossett, Jr.’s Eracism Foundation.

Hope in Life Foundation and the AWIULACC proudly hosted a Message of Peace Releasing Ceremony for Los Angeles and Orange Counties’ civic societies, private sectors, non-governmental organizations, faith-based groups and individuals this morning, to commemorate the International Day of Peace in Los Angeles, California. The event was a huge success as several enthusiastic members of the community with the desire to see a peaceful world joined in to establish that there are myriads who dream of a peaceful world for their own children and the generations thereafter.

We ended our program with the Gayatri Mantra to mark the beginning of our journey of peace.

Thank you,

RUPSI BURMAN

Founder - HOPE IN LIFE FOUNDATION CORP.

Chair - Orange County Task Force  - Cities for CEDAW

September 20, 2015, 11:02 AM

International Day of Peace 2015

International Day of Peace 2015

 

Two children plant a tree in honor of IDP 2015 - with members from Interfaith Peace Building on Natural Resources Management CC

See how the URI community throughout the world is celebrating the International Day of Peace 2015. Please check back soon - this page is being updated with stories and photos from all URI International Day of Peace activities as more reports come in! We'd love to hear from you - please send us photos and reports of your own IDP celebrations at communications@uri.org

Read an International Day of Peace message from URI Executive Director Victor Kazanjian.


Skip directly to IDP 2015 celebrations from: 

Southeast Asia and the Pacific

Asia

Latin America and the Caribbean

Europe

Multi-Region

Middle East and North Africa

North America

Africa


 

Hear UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's message for International Day of Peace.

Join with people throughout the world to add your prayers for peace at 12 noon local time with a Minute of Silence. Then you can send the message --May Peace Prevail on Earth! on #peaceday and #MayPeacePrevailOnEarth 

Happy International Day of Peace!

May Peace Prevail on Earth,
Monica Willard
URI United Nations Representative
International Day of Peace (September 21) 
NGO Committee, Co-chair


 

UNITED NATIONS IDP 2015 CELEBRATION

URI Representative to the United Nations Monica Willard shares a report and photos from the UN celebration of the International Day of Peace 2015. See the full report and photos here.

 


 

   

LOCATION: Cambodia

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Interfaith Peace Building on Natural Resources Management

Dear URI friends,

Alliance for Conflict Transformation (ACT) would like to share with your our Interfaith event we conducted on the 16th of September, 2015, in Cambodia.

Theme: Interfaith Peace Walk on International Day of Peace

Action: peace walk, interfaith sharing, tree planting, and interfaith prayer for nature. 

The interfaith network in Kampong Chhnang province conducted the Interfaith Peace Walk on the International Day of Peace. It focused on natural resources management through tree planting in Traneam Pech village, Kok Banteay commune, Rolea Pbear district, and Kampong Chhnang province. The program for promoting and raising awareness on interfaith peace building concerned the environment in the local community. The activities aim to: celebrate international peacebuilding incorporating peace and human dignity, promote understanding and building capacity for the community for conflict resolution, promote the importance of natural resource through planting trees in the communities and building relationships between authorities and communities, especially interfaith people living together in communities. There were 100 participants including 27 ladies, the chief of the village, representatives of communes, the chief of community forestry, teachers, monks, youth, police, children, and religious leaders. The community faces issues such as discrimination among diverse faiths (Buddhism, Christian, and Muslim) and deforestation.

Read the full description of the event here.

See more photos here.

Sotheavy Srey, Director, Alliance for Conflict Transformation

Interfaith Peace Building on Natural Resources Management

 


LOCATION: Bohol, The Philippines

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Bohol Goodwill Volunteers CC

I wish you all a meaningful International Day of Peace! My CC had a joint celebration with members of a few other groups in our small city.

- Ludwig Quirog Regional Coordinator, URI Southeast Asia and the Pacific - Central Zone


LOCATION: Cambodia

 

Greetings from Cambodia and wishing you all a meaningful International Day of Peace.

URI Cambodia, this year, in partnership with Working Group for Peace and many other interfaith and peace-building organisations, organized a peace reflection workshop.

The whole theater filled with joy and was proud to be part of the solution - not part of the problem.

Sothearwat Seoung, Regional Coordinator for URI Southeast Asia and the Pacific - West Zone


LOCATION: Melbourne, Australia

COOPERATION CIRCLES: Women's Interfaith Network of the URI CC

Over 130 attendees from various religious, faith and human rights groups attended the event. Faith representatives made religious offerings from their faiths. Some touched on the role of education towards peace and initiatives within their faith groups towards world peace.

Read the full report here.


 


LOCATION: Seoul, Republic of Korea

COOPERATION CIRCLES: URI Korea and other Korea CCs

Greetings of peace and compassion from Korea!  Thank you for reminding and working on IDP events with the UNSG's message.

We URI Korea had held a Peace Forum to commemorate the IDP in downtown Seoul last Tuesday with the message.

I sent my message in Korean with the UNSG's last Saturday to thousands members and friends of URI Korea by e-mails and website.

Yesterday as the eve of IDP, we joined the joint events of GO and NGOs of Korea for IDP at Hangang Park in Seoul, as attached photos shows.

Today on IDP, we had a Minute of Silence with prayer for world peace at noon to take a part in networking around the globe.

May peace prevail on Earth!

Dr. Jinwol Lee, URI Asia's Regional Coordinator for Korea


LOCATION: Matuail, Jatrabari, Dhaka, Bangladesh.

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Deeplaid Religion Society (DRS) of Bangladesh

We are hosting “Health For Peace” for about 300 people on 25 Dec-2015. People of all religions are invited to participate. Ln. Habibur Rahman, Managing Director of Deeplaid Pharmaco Ltd., will be a special guest. Through this event, we want to ensure the health of underprivileged people.

 


LOCATION: Lahore, Pakistan

 

COOPERATION CIRCLE: A Better Community for All (ABC4ALL) Pakistan

Congratulations International Day of Peace 2015!

The Celebration of International Day of Peace was held at the Central Cathedral Praying Hand Church, in Lahore, Pakistan on the 20th of September 2015, Sunday Service. My family and Cooperation Circle members attended the celebration. Mr. Aquel Khan, program officer of A Better Community for All (ABC4ALL) Pakistan Cooperation Circle, read the scripture from the Holy Bible. 

Peace songs were sung by the choir and congregation. Rev. Emmanuel Khokhar gave a thrilling message on PEACE and the role of creating peace and harmony with other religions, expressing the theme of IDP 2015 - PARTNERSHIPS FOR PEACE - DIGNITY FOR ALL. Prayers were offered for World Peace and Peace in Pakistan. 

I shared that we all must share at least One Minute of Silence at 12:00 pm whereever we are, and pray for peace, also expressing the reflections of the IDP 2015 message of Ban-Ki- Moon, Secretary General of the United Nations. 

I call all warring parties to lay down their weapons and observe a global ceasefire. To them I say: stop the killings and the destruction, and create space for lasting peace. Ban-Ki-Moon also talked on this topic of GLOBAL UNITY. With the “11 Days 11 Themes” project, as started from September 2015 for a peaceful society around you, all congregation appreciated the celebration of the International Day of Peace. The theme of Global Unity is to be continued not just on a Peace Day celebration only.

Peace May Peace Prevail in Pakistan!
May Peace Prevail on Earth!

Yuel Bhatti, Executive Secretary, United Religions Initiative Pakistan

 

See more photos at ABC4ALL Pakistan CC's facebook page


LOCATION: Lahore, Pakistan

Greetings of peace! 

The International Day of Peace was celebrated at Peace Center, Lahore on 28th of September, 2015 (We postponed it from 21st September due to heavy rains). There were around 100 participants from Muslim, Christian, Hindu and Baha'i communities.

The program started with releasing of doves and balloons in the air.  

The video message of Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary General was read, speeches were made on the challenges of violence, arms races and the lack of interreligious harmony. The speakers admired the message of Ban Ki-moon, peace songs and Video presentations were done. There was also a launching ceremony of the book of Rev. Dr. Marcus Fida called "Shehr-e-Amn" (City of Peace), and there was a distribution of Peace Awards for the outstanding promoters of peace and harmony from different religions and organizations. There was also a candle light ceremony.

All present committed to carry the mission of interfaith dialogue and peace with youth, women’s groups, religious leaders and especially at grassroots levels. 

This IDP was presided over by: His Grace Sebastian Shaw, Archbishop of Lahore; and Chief Guest, Mr. Khalil Tahir Sandhu, Provincial Minister for Human Rights and Minorities Affairs.

Guests of Honor included:

Mualana Abdul Khabir Azad, Grand Imam of Badshahi Mosque Lahore; Allama Zubair Abid, Bishop Alwin Samuel, Pir Shafaat Rasoo, Syed Nao Bahar Shah, Dr. Knwal Feroze, and Mr. Sohail Ahmed Raza.

This program was jointly organized by the Peace Center, URI Pakistan, Global Mission Awareness and Catholic Commission for Interreligious Dialogue and Ecumenism. 

The hosts were: Fr James Channan OP, Rev. Dr. Marqus Fida, and Mr. Javaid William. 

There was a good number of both electronic and press media.

The program ended with supper.

May Peace Prevail On Earth!

In peace,

fr James Channan OP

URI Regional Coordinator Pakistan

Director, Peace Center, Lahore


LOCATION: Chennai, India

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Association for Interfaith Dialogue & Action

Kiran Bali, URI Global Council Chairperson, describes her experiences at the Peace Day celebrations in Chennai with Association for Interfaith Dialogue and Action CC. Read the full story and see more photos here.

 


 

LOCATION: India

COOPERATION CIRCLES: Kasturba Balika Vidyalaya CCSarvodaya Bundelkhand CCSamagra Vikash CC

Subhi Dhupar, India North Zone Cooperation Circle Liaison Officer, shares reports from International Day of Peace 2015 celebrations in India’s North Zone, which drew attention to women's empowerment and education, and to protecting the environment. They organized scholastic competitions for schoolgirls belonging to under-privileged sections of society, and distributed useful plants to raise environmental awareness. See the full report here.

More details from Kasturba Balika Vidyalaya CC:

International Day of Peace was celebrated by the Kasturba CC in the hostel premises by 200 students and staff members on 21st September, 2015. The programme started with the interfaith prayer by the students. Students and staff members gave their valuable suggestions in a group discussion as to how peace can be established in the universe. How can peace be established through the principles of non-violence which were given by the father of Nation Mahatma Gandhi to the entire world? Some students also gave their opinions about how peace should be started from school, home, and by oneself. Some students discussed the problem in Syria and prayed for peace. A two-minute silence was observed for peace in all the terrorism-stricken countries and the people of Nepal. A Candle Mrach was organized on the occasion of the peace day by the participants. 

We also organized a painting competition to commemorate this occasion. People actively participated in this programme, making it a huge success.

May Peace prevail on this earth…. may all live with love, peace and brotherhood

Parveen Yadav


LOCATION: India (North Zone)

We Cooperation Circles from North India Five States celebrated the IDP in a manner, we celebrate every moment every day. IDP is a day to analyse our services and support the underprivileged and needy to the extent of our satisfaction in life, right from childhood. We all CCs serve humanity up to the level we can with our own resources and find the results by getting all those who are needy to live a normal life.

We think that a section of the society is not satisfied or can’t afford some requirements to be in peace. Those should be fulfilled by the process of volunteer service by different CCs members with the resources they can afford. In our different centers, around six hundred children in the category of orphans, differently able, senior citizens, needy older people, and leprosy patients.

We feel, when these categories are served to the extent with the normal people, then these can be achieved without hatred and violence.

And we feel, if a good percentage of these people are rehabilitated at the grassroots level, then the whole society is in peace. We all on the International Day of Peace self-analyse our work by conferences, dialogue, and meetings with all categories of society, and we review our actions.

In the last fourteen years, under the banner of URI North Zone India and by working strictly on the principals of URI, we have achieved the results which are clearly known to the public and transparently observed.

Our works, actions, and way of works are being checked by the URI central office, global office, and zonal office by visiting our institutions time to time.

We seek a kind moral support for our institutions in North India, so that we can fulfill the aims and objective of making peace in the world.

A Better World Is Possible!

Gagan Kumar, correspondent of URI North Zone Five States


 

LOCATION: Pakistan

COOPERATION CIRCLE: BETHAK-Pakistan

BETHAK organization, Khanewal conducted a dialogue meeting on the International Day for Peace on partnership for peace and dignity for all.

Read the full report.


LOCATION: India

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Atman: the Samuhaa

Subhi Dhupar, India North Zone Cooperation Circle Liaison Officer, shares reports from International Day of Peace 2015 celebrations in India’s North Zone, where one of the region's newest Cooperation Circles honored the occasion through a gathering of women and sharing of hymns across caste and class lines. See the full report here.


 

LOCATION: Delhi, India

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Chetna Educational Society CC

The Cooperation Circle Chetna Educational Society Delhi has celebrated the International Day of Peace with four hundred school students. On this occasion, Society organised an essay writing competition and distributed their merit certificate. On this occasion, I delivered a message about URI and its objectives for peace building. A number of teachers gave speeches about the importance of this day.

With regards,

Deokant Mishra


 

LOCATION: India

COOPERATION CIRCLES: Nirmala Deshpande Sansthan, Panipat

On the occasion of the International Day of Peace, a drawing and essay competition was organised among students of Nirmala Deshpande Sansthan Panipat (a Cooperation Circle of URI in North India) in which 54 students participated. Mr. Sadanand Biswas, Regional Coordinator of United Religions Initiative India, was the chief guest. Mr. Biswas said, while addressing the gathering, that the main object of Indian culture and values is to serve the humanity of the world and for world peace. Women are not only the centre of the peace, but creators of humanity and they have a pioneering and important role in establishing peace on the earth. Our elders and saints always treat this world as one family and always wish welfare and peace amongst all through peaceful and non-violent means.

On this occasion 7 winning students among 54 were awarded with certificates and prizes and sweets were distributed among other present students.

In the program, Mr. Ram Mohan Rai, CC coordinator, Laureate Ramesh Puhal, Social activists Ms. Sunita Anand, Ashu Kapoor, Rosy Chawla, Divya Singh, Dinakshi, Beena Bharti, Seema Rani, Neelam, Sugndha, Tripti and Mehak were prominent, among others.


LOCATION: South India

From Abraham Karickam, Regional Coordinator, India, South Zone, please enjoy these videos of URI South India's International Day of Peace 2015 Peace Rally.


 


 

LOCATION: Maharashtra, India

COOPERATION CIRCLE: PEACE (Peace Education Association & Centre for Excellence)

PEACE CC organized a 'Piece for Peace' activity as part of the UN Peace Day celebration. 

"The activity was enthusiastically attended by the children and the youth studying in different schools and colleges. They wrote, painted and conveyed their thoughts on their understanding of the Theme 'Our world is One Family' the literal meaning of 'VasudaivaKutumbakam.'"

See the full report here.


Dear brothers and sisters of the URI staff family:

Happy International Day of Peace. God bless your steps on the Mother Earth and all the work you are doing to help our organization to build a culture of peace in the world. That seems to be the most important challenge at this moment of our human history.

I send you my love and respect, 

Dra. Enoé Texier, Coordinadora Regional de la Iniciativa para las Religiones Unidas, (URI) América Latina & El Caribe


A message from Mr. Ciro Gabriel Avruj, URI Global Council Trustee:

(Misiones Unidas CC and Humanity’s Team - Argentina)

Dear community of peacemakers,

We are preparing to celebrate the International Day of Peace this September 21. Through www.netspirit.tv we will be part of a great global event.

 


LOCATION: Santiago, Chile

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Santiago Spiritual Forum for Peace

An Interreligious Celebration on the International Day of Peace

 (September 21, 2015; Santiago, Chile)

This September 21, the Spiritual Forum for Peace Santiago called for the fourteenth consecutive year an interfaith prayer service to mark the International Day of Peace, open to all who wished to attend, held in the Auditorium of the College San Ignacio between 19:00 and 20:30. There, fifteen representatives of various religions and spiritual traditions that have active communities in Chile gathered to pray for peace. Sitting in a circle, they successively raised their prayers, according to the religious faith and tradition of each of the worshipers, to finish reading by all attendees a Declaration for Peace in the World. Among those who prayed were religious leaders and representatives of the Catholic Church, the Orthodox Church, the historic Protestant churches and the Pentecostal world, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Sikhism, the Baha'i faith, traditions Sufi spiritual and Mapuche, and Brahma Kumaris. The musical part was by the Choir of CEPAL.

This celebration was supported and sponsored by:

  • Fraternidad Ecuménica de Chile - FRAECH
  • Confraternidad Cristiana de Iglesias - CCI
  • Comisión Nacional de Ecumenismo y Diálogo Interreligioso
  • de la Conferencia Episcopal de Chile - CONEDI
  • Conferencia de Religiosos y Religiosas de Chile - CONFERRE
  • Oficina Nacional de Asuntos Religiosos, Gobierno de Chile - ONAR

FORUM MOTTO: "Peace is Love Made Coexistence"

(Peace declaration read in chorus by all participants)

DECLARATION FOR PEACE IN THE WORLD

We, representatives and members of different religions and spiritual traditions, have gathered today to witness our joint prayer with our commitment to the cause of peace and our desire to live in harmony, each respecting our choices of faith and looking for common ways, through dialogue, to build a more just, supportive and fraternal society.

In that spirit, we express our commitment to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; in particular its recognition of the equal dignity and rights of all human beings as well as the right of everyone to freedom of thought, conscience and religion.

In that same spirit we call on the members of our communities and, in general, to all men and women of Santiago and Chile --- whatever their origin, their beliefs, their profession, age or social status --- who work united in peace building.

The genuine and lasting world peace; a culture made and recorded as longing in the heart of every human being; peace solidly based on the structures of a new society; more just, united and harmonious than the current society; deeply respectful of human rights and life in all its manifestations; in which sharing is more important than competing, and the dialogue and agreements, replace all violent resolutions of conflicts.

We want the Third Millennium we are starting to be brighter than the last. We met terrible wars, genocide, colonialism, religious intolerance and persecution. We want for our generation and future generations a world where diversity of cultures and beliefs is valued and respected, a world of brothers and sisters reconcile with each other and with the Earth, a world where we can finally say that the peace we enjoy in our hearts, in our families and communities and between nations is largely the fruit of love made coexistence.

Building that peace is everyone's job. Together we can achieve.

September 21, 2015; Santiago, Chile

ORIGINAL TEXT:

Sobre el Acto Interreligioso celebrando el Día Internacional de la Paz

(21 de Septiembre de 2015, en Santiago de Chile)

Este 21 de Septiembre, el Foro Espiritual de Santiago por la Paz convocó por décimo cuarto año consecutivo un acto interreligioso de oración para celebrar el Día Internacional de la Paz, abierto a todos quienes quisieran asistir, que se realizó en el Salón de Actos del Colegio San Ignacio entre las 19:00 y las 20:30 horas. Allí representantes de quince diversas religiones y tradiciones espirituales que tienen comunidades activas en Chile se reunieron a orar por la paz. Sentados en círculo, elevaran sucesivamente sus plegarias, conforme a la fe religiosa y tradición de cada uno de los orantes, para terminar leyendo junto a todos los asistentes una Declaración por la Paz en el Mundo. Entre quienes oraron había líderes religiosos y representantes de la Iglesia Católica, de la Iglesia Ortodoxa, de las iglesias protestantes históricas y del mundo pentecostal, del Judaísmo, del Islam, del Budismo, del Sikhismo, de la fe Bahá’í, de las tradiciones espirituales Sufi y del pueblo Mapuche, y de Brahma Kumaris. La parte musical estuvo a cargo del Coro de la CEPAL.

(Declaración por la paz leída en coro por todos los participantes en el acto)DECLARACION POR LA PAZ EN EL MUNDO

Nosotros, representantes y miembros de distintas religiones y tradiciones espirituales, nos hemos reunido hoy para testimoniar con nuestra oración conjunta nuestro compromiso con la causa de la paz y nuestra voluntad de vivir en armonía, respetando mutuamente nuestras opciones de fe y buscando a través del diálogo caminos comunes para construir una sociedad más justa, solidaria y fraternal. En ese espíritu, manifestamos nuestra adhesión a la Declaración Universal de los Derechos Humanos, en particular a su reconocimiento de la igualdad en dignidad y derechos de todos los seres humanos, así como del derecho de toda persona a la libertad de pensamiento, de conciencia y de religión. En ese mismo espíritu llamamos a los miembros de nuestras comunidades y, en general, a todos los hombres y mujeres de Santiago y de Chile ---cualquiera sea su origen, sus creencias, su profesión, edad o condición social--- a trabajar unidos en la construcción de la paz. el mundo una paz genuina y duradera, hecha cultura y grabada como anhelo en el corazón de cada ser humano; una paz sólidamente basada en las estructuras de una nueva sociedad, más justa, solidaria y armoniosa que la actual, profundamente respetuosa de los Derechos Humanos y de la Vida en todas sus manifestaciones, en la que compartir sea más importante que competir, y en la que el diálogo y los acuerdos sustituyan a toda forma violenta en la solución de los conflictos. Queremos que el Tercer Milenio que estamos iniciando sea más luminoso que el anterior, que conoció guerras terribles, genocidios, colonialismo, intolerancia y persecución religiosa. Queremos para nuestra generación y las generaciones futuras un mundo donde la diversidad de culturas y de creencias sea valorada y respetada, un mundo de hermanos y hermanas reconciliados entre sí y con la Tierra, un mundo donde por fin podamos decir que la paz que gozamos en nuestros corazones, en nuestras familias y comunidades y entre las naciones es en gran medida el fruto del amor hecho convivencia. Construir esa paz es tarea de todos. Unidos podemos lograrlo.

Santiago de Chile, 21 de Septiembre de 2015.


 

 

LOCATION: Helsinki, Finland

COOPERATION CIRCLES: Multiple

Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that.

Hate cannot drive hate: only love can do that.

                                                          Martin Luther King Jr.

Best greetings from St. Paul Church in Helsinki, where we had the Peace Prayer event today to celebrate the International Peace Day.

Many of the people who attended this prayer event, held at the Lutheran Church, were URI members from our URI Cooperation Circles.

There were people from Islam, Hinduism, Brahma Kumaris, Ananda Marga, Mother Amma-movement, Bahai-faith, and Christianity. 

Peace and all good!

Heidi Rautionmaa, former URI Global Council Trustee and European Executive Committee member


 

 

LOCATION: Dushanbe, Tajikistan

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Center for Peace and Dialogue of Cultures CC

21st September, in Dushanbe, we had a gathering where people (members and not members of our Cooperation Circle) had praying, singing, talking, and exchanging ideas on different important issues on Tajikistan and around the world. Since our Cooperation Circle links with Shahidi International Musical Foundation, we do promote among our members ideas on the essentiality of Culture, as a phenomenon that plays a major role in the peace-creating process. We had a group of young musicians, who had a very good performance.


 

LOCATION: Sanski Most, Bosnia and Herzegovina

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Youth for Peace

From the 16th until the 21st of September 2015, CIM (Centar za izgradnju mira / Center for Peacebuilding) organised the annual International Peace Week project in Sanski Most, Bosnia and Herzegovina. During this week they aimed to raise awareness of issues related to conflict and peace building by engaging our local community in a wide range of activities. They marked with lectures, activism workshops, art activities, concerts, and discussions. Project was supported by different local and international organizations including CRS (Catholic Relief Service) and KAS (Konrad Adenauer Foundation).

Read the full story and see more photos here.


LOCATIONBulgaria 

COOPERATION CIRCLE: BRIDGES “Eastern European Forum for Dialogue”

Dear URI Family,

There is a wonderful announcement for the International Day of Peace from Bulgaria:

Several URI Cooperation Circles from Bulgaria in joint efforts launched a new pilot course for the students of the Private College “Eastern European Educational Center” in Plovdiv and the new lecture course appeared as a printed book in Bulgarian under the title “UN: 70 Years of Service for Peace with Good Deeds” (author and editor Dr. Georgi Naydenov, one of the consultants of the edition is the URI Global Trustee Rev. Petar Gramatikov, publisher “Europress” – Plovdiv, ISBN: 978-954-9357, 131 pages).

The textbook gives a full analysis of the organigram of United Nations popularizing its international organizations and underlines the work of UN on the global scene during the last seven decades solving global problems trough policy of solidarity, diplomacy and other due legal instruments.

Resolution of the “Help the Needy Foundation” – Plovdiv and partner organizations (Media Center “EuroPress”, College “Eastern European Educational Center”, Centre for Ecumenical Dialogue “Saint Apostle Hermas” – all four CC of URI Europe, and other like-minded organizations) from May 2015, in concert with the 70th anniversary of the United Nations, and the 60 years since Bulgaria joined the UN family.

Unanimously accepted was the proposal to award all former UN Gen. Secretaries and Incumbent Secretary-General with the medal from the NGO-sector in Bulgaria “For People With Good Hearts” for their contribution and dedication to international peace and humanism.

May Peace Prevail on Earth,

Rev. Hierodeacon Petar Gramatikov

Global Council Trustee - United Religions Initiatives

 Vice-President of BRIDGES “Eastern European Forum for Dialogue”

Cooperation Circle of United Religions Initiatives (URI Europe)


LOCATION: Germany

COOPERATION CIRCLES: URI Germany CC (URI Deutschland CC)DMLBonn CC (Deutsche Muslim-Liga Bonn e.V)

In Bonn members of the DMLBonn CC, URI Germany CC and the Baha’i community Bonn celebrated UN International Day of Peace with an interfaith film evening on September 15, 2015. Baha’i, Catholic, Humanist, Muslim and Old Catholic activists came together. Starting with a delicious buffet evening snack, people had a chance to catch up with and get to know each other.

See the full report and more photos here.

 


 

LOCATION: Novosibirsk, and throughout Russia

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Euro-Asia CC

The 21st of September, which we know as the Day of Peace, is celebrated in the Russian Orthodox Church as the Birthday of the Mother of Jesus. They believe it to be the Great Day of the World Joy. We in Russia have double celebrations on this day, including a video story by Dmitriy Ofitserov, which told us about his very interesting volunteer participation in the World Initiative of Peace Road. “Three men in a car” decided to undertake a peaceful rally “Peace Road” through Russia, which is as long as 10,000klms.

Read the full story here: We All Are On Peace Road


 

LOCATION: Rome, Italy

Greetings of love and peace. Thank you for your encouragement.

On Sept 25th, celebrating the International Day of Peace, there was a Book Release and Presentation event on “Life and Its Origin: Exploration from Science and Spiritual Traditions” with 25 distinguished contributors including 2 Nobel Laureates, at Bibliothe, Rome.  

On Sept 26th, International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, we have prayed by reading out the prayers of both Bishop Swing ("A Prayer for Those Whose Hearts Carry the Weight of Nuclear Weapons") and Pope Francis at the end of the Seminar on Science and Spirituality, at Bibliothe, Rome. 

Appreciatively,

Vasudeva Rao

Trustee & Asst. Secretary, Global Council, United Religions Initiative, & President, Bhaktivedanta Institute

 


 

COOPERATION CIRCLES: Hope in Life Foundation

Hope in Life Foundation Cooperation Circle, in collaboration with American Women for International Understanding (AWIU) Los Angeles County Chapter, hosted a UN International Day of Peace event yesterday. We were honored to have Sari Heidenreich, URI Regional Coordinator for North America, with us.

Along with the United Nations and the global community, we observed the International Day of Peace this morning at the famous Rose Garden, Los Angeles, California. 21st September is observed as the day of non-violence and cease fire throughout the world.

Our guest of honor was Louis “Lou” Gossett, Jr., Oscar and Emmy Winner and Founder, President and Board Chair of the Louis Gossett, Jr.’s Eracism Foundation.

Hope in Life Foundation and the AWIULACC proudly hosted a Message of Peace Releasing Ceremony for Los Angeles and Orange Counties’ civic societies, private sectors, non-governmental organizations, faith-based groups and individuals this morning, to commemorate the International Day of Peace in Los Angeles, California. The event was a huge success as several enthusiastic members of the community with the desire to see a peaceful world joined in to establish that there are myriads who dream of a peaceful world for their own children and the generations thereafter.

We ended our program with the Gayatri Mantra to mark the beginning of our journey of peace.

Thank you,

RUPSI BURMAN

Founder - HOPE IN LIFE FOUNDATION CORP.

Chair - Orange County Task Force  - Cities for CEDAW


LOCATION: Jerusalem

COOPERATION CIRCLE: The Abrahamic Reunion CC

Multi-Faith Gathering, Walk For Understanding and Non-Violence on the Eve of Yom Kippur and Eid Al Adha

On September 21, the Abrahamic Reunion Cooperation Circle celebrated the International Day of Peace with “rabbis, sheiks and imams leading us in the study of the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur and the Muslim holiday of Eid Al adha - both being celebrated this year beginning on September 22 or 23. In the past the different modes of observing our holy days has led to misunderstanding, and even clashes.

"Our event will demonstrate inter-religious harmony and understanding. We will have small group discussions of how we personally celebrate this holiday in our homes and communities. Then we will have men and women; Christian, Druze, Jewish, and Muslim; religious and spiritual leaders; walking together and giving blessings for peace on the Haas Promenade on the seam between East and West Jerusalem -- demonstrating unity and strengthening non-violence in preparation for our holy days.”

Elana Rozenman
Executive Director
TRUST-Emun


LOCATIONS: Morocco, Mauritania, Tunisia, Libya, Algeria 

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Salam Shabab CC

For the International Day of Peace, Salam Shabab Cooperation Circle organised “World Days of Peace 2015” in Morocco, Mauritania, and small actions by our partners in Tunisia, Libya, and our volunteers in Algeria. 

The event featured three different activities in Morocco and Mauritania, in cooperation with URI and Cooperation Circle activists, and our local association partners. The first phase of the large project, which we dream we will realize in the first years of 2016, is a humanitarian convoy caravan planning by URI CC Salam Shabab from Tangier to Nouakchott. With the participation of the young people, we will work with the Maghreeb region and URI team. Our activities aim to mobilize people to the idea of the future, via groups of different initiatives with young people and children. The campaign took place from September 20 to September 27 and in the media field, through three main activities. Learn more.


LOCATION: Amman, Jordan

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Naya CC

On 21 of September 2015, a number of Jordanian URI folks gathered in the URI office in Amman to honor the IDP by reciting and reflecting on verses that call for Peace in Holy Scriptures. Naya CC combined verses about peace, justice, unity, respect, equality from different religious scriptures and we recite them. Then we reflected on these verses sharing our understanding and highlighting the lessons behind each verse. Such an exercise revealed how close we are to each other and how God created us to help each other and live together in peace and harmony. Also, we discussed how we can live God's teachings starting by ourselves and families.

In love and Peace,

Mamoun Ahmad, Regional Coordinator, URI Middle East and North Africa


 

LOCATION: Culver City, California, United States

COOPERATION CIRCLES: Unity and Diversity World CouncilCulver City Interfaith Alliance, Compassion Games International (a non-profit initiative of the Compassionate Action Network)

Happy International Day of Peace to each of you! I have had the pleasure of being with several Cooperation Circles in the Los Angeles area this weekend to celebrate the occasion. I was invited by Unity and Diversity World Council (UDC) to celebrate their 50th anniversary and International Day of Peace!

On Saturday I was with UDC at a day-long dialogue aimed at helping us become a "United People's." On Sunday UDC, Culver City Interfaith Alliance and many other peacebuilding organizations gathered for a Peace Festival and Peace Sunday program hosted at Agape International Spiritual Center! And this morning Hope in Life Foundation hosted an event in a rose garden to commemorate IDP and commit to peace.

In Peace, 
Sari Heidenreich 
North America Regional Coordinator

LOCATION: Kashi, Sebastian, Florida USA

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Kashi Foundation

We hosted Listening Circles from September 21 - September 28, which included Hinduism, Christianity, Buddhism, Judaism, and Sikhism. 

This event was a week-long event in which three distinct "listening circle" discussions were held in a sacred space at Kashi (an interfaith intentional community in Florida). Typically, Kashi uses listening circles to transform culture by facilitating deeper dialogue and listening in a way that sets a tone of equal participation, respect, and establishes a setting of trust, safety, inclusion and all voices to be heard. As these are also environmental qualifications for peace building, we used listening circles to discuss what peace within our selves, in our communities, and in the world meant to us. More specifically we discussed peace building within the interfaith community of Kashi. For me, these circles were a reminder of what peace actually feels like in action. Although I may access peace within my own self at any time, to feel it within the body of a community can be a rare thing. I was touched and changed by the moments we shared in these circles and am continually blown away by the consistency with which circle strategies have an ability to facilitate meaningful dialogue and connection simply by the nature of its process. In terms of how this experience impacted my community, it seems the discussions around peace brought prior discussions full circle and gave context/meaning to the relationship building work we have been doing within Kashi. I have also witnessed a new surge in interest in peace and community building strategies among the residents of this community as they take initiative to start their own events and even be trained in listening circle facilitation. 

There were many impactful moments in this series of listening circles. However, a moment that has stuck in my heart and mind was a simple yet powerful comment made by one of Kashi's oldest members. Upon being passed the talking piece, she sat quietly for a few moments with her eyes set on the fire that lay at the center of the circle. When she was ready to speak she simply explained that although she had lived in this community for over 30 years, she has never felt known, or that she really knew others in this community, until this moment. She explained that the space of peace, compassion, and listening that we were holding together was what she has been unknowingly looking for in order to uncover the threads of connection that so tightly entwined all of us. She reminisced on her loneliness in the spiritual journey and how one can forget that connecting to others can be as much a spiritual experience as connecting to oneself in practices such as meditation. She emphasized the point that we were actually CREATING peace in these circles, and not merely talking about it. For me, it is these seemingly very simple moments that often carry the most power.

LOCATION: Los Angeles, California, United States

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Ethics CC

The Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Ethics CC, with the Compassion Games, planned a Peace Walk to unite Los Angeles Area Residents in a "Survival of the Kindest." Read the full story here.

LOCATION: Charlotte, North Carolina, USA

COOPERATION CIRCLE: United Religions of Charlotte

The International Day of Peace was held at International House, Charlotte, NC, on Sunday, Sept 20, 2015. About 75 participants were there, including Hindu, Muslim, Christian, and Baha'i faiths.

The gentleman brothers who were our keynote speakers spoke about the importance of forgiveness and reconciliation of diverse people. They shared of their early experiences with segregation and how they were capable of handling a lot of injustice without becoming bitter. They instilled the importance of allowing the Divine to do perform whatever is needed in the lives with those whom we have conflict and our job is to love and show kindness, even to our perceived enemies.

The day was very special. It was a blessing to be in the presence of people who nurture peace in their community. It recharged me to continue on the path chosen for my life.

See more photos at the Facebook page here.

LOCATION: Las Vegas, Nevada, United States

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Interfaith Council of Southern Nevada

For Peace Day 2015: Peace through Collaboration, members of the community connected and enjoyed one another's talents and company through various actives such as a drum circle, a 50 single squared hopscotch that required more than one person to finish (because we can't get to peace alone), painting a six-foot wooden peace sign together, and enjoying the beautiful music of Francyl Garwyn and Pato Banton.

Partners included: That Adopted Girl Inc., and the Bhakti Yoga Club at UNLV. The event took place on the University of Nevada, Las Vegas Campus, Nevada, USA Wednesday, September 23 from 12 - 7 pm. Members of all religious traditions, religious none's, and secular groups and individuals were invited. Pato Banton, a renowned Reggae artist, Francyl Garwin, and a variety of local Las Vegas non-profits took part.

LOCATION: Danville, CA, USA

COOPERATION CIRCLE: Interfaith Council of Contra Costa County

Interfaith Council of Contra Costa County,