Peace Pals Winner & Mayor of Iasi, Romania hold Peace Pole Dedication Ceremony

March 27th, 2017

On March 24th in the city of Iasi, Romania at the National Park Theatre “Teatrul Național Vasile Alecsandri’ a beautiful Peace Pole Dedication ceremony took place.

David Alexandru (2106 – 1st place winner in his age category) contacted Mayor Mihai Chirica and generously donated his prize of a Peace Pole to the city of Iasi.  Mayor Mihai Chirica accepted the Peace Pole and together they planned a beautiful event which was shared by the community.

Mayor Mihai Chirica shared on his FB page (Romanian) “The most important messengers of peace are children. In Iasi we have to promote the idea of ​​peace in the world, without, the future of humanity would be chaotic and makes us proud of our city’s ability.”  “David honored us with his benefits and Iasi managed to bring back to the world as a city of intelligence, culture and a talented young generation.”

The event included music, dance and special awards to young people in Iasi, Romania.

All of us at The World Peace Prayer Society, The Peace Pole Project and Peace Pals International are so honored to have played a small part in this.  We are also so proud of David’s accomplishments.

For more information on Peace Pals International, please visit the website.

 

Sherwood Rotary Peace Pole planted at the Sherwood Methodist Church, Sherwood, Oregon-USA

March 22nd, 2017

On March 19,2017,  the Rotary Club of Sherwood  dedicated its fourth Peace Pole at Sherwood United Methodist Church at 1:00 pm. As part of their commitment to peace making this year the Sherwood United Methodist Church is highlighting various struggles faced by indigenous peoples. Following the service for the installation of the Peace Pole there will be a presentation by Rev. Aric Clark about his visit to Standing Rock with an update on the current situation of the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Rev. Aric Clark shared the following. “We are honored to take part in this effort to build a visible commitment to peace in Sherwood. As Christians we believe that it is our life’s work to build a just and sustainable peace for all people, beginning with the most vulnerable and marginalized among us. That is why we have worked for years to alleviate hunger in our community. It is why we publicly proclaim welcome for refugees and immigrants, seek understanding with our neighbors of all faiths and of no-faith, and demand justice for the oppressed. May this Peace Pole be a reminder of those commitments to us and to everyone who visits this garden. May Peace Prevail On Earth.”

As part of their commitment to peace making, the Sherwood United Methodist Church is highlighting various struggles faced by indigenous people.  Rev. Clark made a presentation after the Peace Pole dedication about his visit to Standing Rock with an update on the current situation of the Dakota Access Pipeline.  On Sunday, June 4, Sherwood United Methodist Church will host a screening of the documentary “Promised Land” about the struggle of the Duwamish and Chinook peoples to be recognized as tribes by the federal government.  Following the film there will be a panel discussion by several members of the Chinook Nation.  All are welcome.

Sherwood Rotary initiated its Peace Pole project in 2016 to raise awareness in the community of the need to promote world peace and understanding.  The Peace Poles are 6 feet high and display the words “May Peace Prevail On Earth” in 4 different languages.  The languages displayed on their pole will be English, Arabic, Hebrew and Mandarin Chinese.  To date, Peace Poles have been erected at the Sherwood YMCA and St. Francis Catholic Church and School, Our Table Cooperative with commitments for 6 more at sites throughout town.

Sherwood Rotary has qualified as a Peace Builder Club and is part of Rotary District 5100 which has taken on a major initiative to establish 100 Peace Poles in Oregon and Washington in partnership with the Jubitz Family Foundation which is providing funding for the project.

Members of the community are encouraged to view the Peace Poles at the YMCA, St. Francis, Our Table, Sherwood  United Methodist Church and to participate in a series of peace-related educational events and activities being offered in Sherwood over the coming months.  For more information on Sherwood Rotary’s peace initiatives, contact Rotary President Joe Gall at gallj@sherwoodoregon.gov.

Photo and Press Release Submitted by:
Wendy Wells
Sherwood Rotary Service Chair

WPPS at the UN Commission on the Status of Women for the 3rd Annual Service of Gratitude and Remembrance in NYC-USA

March 22nd, 2017

Thursday, March 16, 2017

The World Peace Prayer Society ( WPPS) co-sponsored the 3rd Annual Service of Gratitude and Remembrance during the UN Commission on the Status of Women at the chapel of the Church Center for the United Nations, along with partner organizations The Parliament of the World’s Religions, Temple of Understanding, Interfaith Center of New York, International Yoga Day Committee at the UN, United Religions Initiative, and United Methodist Women. This service of prayer and reflection honors the women who have gone before, leaving their indelible mark through dedicated service to humanity.

Chaplain Dionne Boissiere created a beautiful altar that included a mini Peace Pole, and Monica Willard of the URI invited everyone to name a woman who had inspired us before her passing and inscribe the names in a book.

A highlight of the program was by flautist Brandon Perdomo, who serves as WPPS Youth Representative to the UN, performing several musical numbers with percussionist Caitlin Cawley.

At the close of the service, Monica suggested a group photo and Sande Hart, of the Compassion Games International, called out for everyone to say, “May Peace Prevail on Earth!” A woman named Rachel Bachenberg then approached Rev. Deborah Moldow, WPPS UN Representative, to tell her about the Peace Pole at her church, Keystone United Methodist Church (formerly Broadway UMC) in Kansas City, Missouri, and how much it meant to the congregation.

Deborah and Monica co-hosted a small dinner to honor some of our special colleagues who were present for the event, including Sabina Rifat, who runs the programs for women for URI Pakistan. Together with Fr. James Channan, she has planted more than 60 Peace Poles all over Pakistan!

Monica Willard, Sabina Rifat, Deborah Moldow, Martha Gallahue

Deborah placed a desktop Peace Pole on the table at dinner, causing a young waiter to come up and tell us about the Peace Pole that is at his high school on Long Island, NY. He was so excited to tell us and to meet all of us that Monica gave him a mini Peace Pole. It is sincere young people like him who will take peace forward into the future.

May Peace Prevail on Earth!

 

 

 

 

Peace Pals 2016 Winner gifts Peace Pole to the City of Iasi, Romania

March 16th, 2017

David Alexandru who came in first place in his age group in the 2016 Peace Pals International Art Exhibition and awards chose to gift his winning Peace Pole to the City of Iasi in Romania in care of Mayor Mihai Chirica.

David and the city of Iasi are planning a beautiful event to commemorate the planting of the Peace Pole, which will be held on the 24th of March.

Congratulations David, we can’t wait to hear the news of your event.

“Walk2Peace” Ten Million Voices for Peace Around the World – SWEDEN

March 15th, 2017

“Next Summer I’m going to walk to Syria!”  That’s how it started.

In 2015, I was standing in my dad’s garden and out of the blue this idea appeared. Strangely enough the idea felt so normal. Like it was just some little walk around the neighborhood.

Except Syria was 6000 km away and plagued by one of the worst civil wars in modern history.

I didn’t think more of the idea for many months. I told my parents who were a bit worried. My friends just smiled and said, “ of course you should walk! 

In 2016, just a few days before I was going to begin, I sat in a wonderful ceremony on a Swedish island. And the idea came back, with a twist:

“I’m not just walking to Syria. I’m going to keep walking around the Earth until we create world peace.”

I thought, “Oh… okay. That’s good to know before I start I guess…”

12 of June 2016, I began walking.   For six months, I walked 2000 km to southern Germany and met people from all over the world. New and old friends from Norway, Australia and even Syria walked with me towards peace. Peace inside ourselves and peace in our world.

When I came to Hamburg a strange thing happened. I was just going to cross a park when I saw a pole protruding from a huge bush. “Möge frieden auf Erden sein” were the words on it. I looked on the other side as my German was still very limited and found the following phrase “May Peace Prevail on Earth.”

It was a Peace Pole, and it wasn’t the first I had passed. Although I didn’t know it at the time, I had been sitting next to a Peace Pole in Sweden when I visited a spiritual community just before I was going to begin walking. 

And it wasn’t the last. Close to the old border between East and West Germany, I passed a house that I felt drawn towards. On the roof were colorful Tibetan prayer flags (always a good sign). I got invited for tea to the couple living there and they were very happy to know about my peace walk and gladly showed me another Peace Pole in their garden!

Right now I’m sitting next to my dear grandmother in Sweden. In the winter I decided it was time to return to Sweden to be with her in her last phase of life and take a brief pause from the peace walk. This gave me wonderful meetings with my dear family and friends and time to contemplate and plan the next part of my walk.

In a little more than a month I will resume walking from South Germany through Central Europe. Passing Prague, Vienna, Budapest and Istanbul on my way to peace.

You are most welcome to join, support and spread the word!

May Peace Prevail on Earth!

And may we do everything in our power to make it so.

I promise to do everything in my power to create peace.

Sincerely Albin

www.walk2peace.world
https://www.facebook.com/walk2peace/

Peace Pals International in Jakarta, Indonesia

March 13th, 2017

In 2016, FAKTA (an NGO) working in Jakarta, Indonesia shared the Peace Pals International art Exhibition and Awards contest with children in various communities. Chizuyo Inoue shared her experience with The Society of the Sacred Heart at the UN, which has published her story.

“When I received an announcement that the World Peace Prayer Society, an NGO at the UN, was having another Peace Pals art competition for children, I immediately thought of the children I see every day in some of the poor neighborhoods of East Jakarta. Ever since my internship in 2013 with Sr. Joan Kirby rscj, who at that moment was the NGO Representative at the UN for the Temple of Understanding, I have looked for ways to connect our children who live in extreme poverty with the work of the UN. This invitation was a real chance…Read More

Peace Pals International is truly touched by the experiences Chizuyo has shared with us and we are pleased we are able to share with you.

We also received a video of Children of Indonesia saying “May Peace Prevail On Earth” in their native language.

Chappaqua Girl Scout Troop 2352 dedicate Peace Pole-Chappaqua, NY-USA

March 9th, 2017

image1I wanted to follow up about our community’s experience of planting and dedicating the Peace Pole in our town of Chappaqua.  The event happened on Friday, February 3rd, 2017 at 12 noon.  Chappaqua Girl Scout Troop 2352 dedicated the Peace Pole with a few speeches, quotes, the poem, “Listen to the Musn’ts” by Shel Silverstein and the song, “Lean on Me.”

Our community, especially the local bookstore ‘Scattered Books’ and its owner, Laura Scott Schaefer and manager, Kimberly Goebel, have been incredibly supportive.

Our troop hopes to continue to bring the message of peace to life.  The planting of the Peace Pole initiated the girls’ bronze award project, a project that must be meaningful and sustainable, so we will be in the throes of planning ongoing activities and events which bring home the message of peace, tolerance and empathy.  We are so excited to begin this work and thankful for all of your support.

Thanks again for all of your help,
Tara Ramirez

Peace Pals 2016 Winner donates Peace Pole Prize to School – USA

February 24th, 2017

Avelyn Jing, 5 of the USA, won First Place in her age group in the 2016 Peace Pals International Art Exhibition and Awards. Avelyn portrayed the theme of “May Peace Prevail on Earth” and “Oneness with Diversity” by drawing children from various nationalities dancing together under a rainbow and peace dove, surrounding by flags in hearts.

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Avelyn, who has a passion for art, was inspired by the fun she has dancing and singing with her friends, many of whom hail from diverse backgrounds.

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As part of her prize, Avelyn was awarded a 6-foot Peace Pole which she and her family donated to her school Palo Verde Elementary. Avelyn’s award was announced on February 24th at the school morning assembly and the Peace Pole was recognized as decorated monument for reminding and visualizing peace.

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“Earth Holder Sangha” dedicate a Peace Pole at Heritage Village, Southbury, Connecticut-USA

February 15th, 2017

On, Sunday, December 11, 2016 the “Earth Holder Sangha” a community in the tradition of Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh, celebrated the dedication of a Peace Pole with “MAY PEACE PREVAIL ON EARTH’ in four languages: English, Celtic/Gaelic, Hebrew, and Oglala Sioux Lakota.

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Each side represents the ancestral heritage of Judith Stevens, who purchased the Peace Pole.

Bruce Nichols, of Shelton, CT co-facilitated along with Shaman Lucy Lightwalker.  Each gave gifts for the Earth and to our ancestors.  Tobacco and holy water from all over the earth was gathered and poured on the ground, as well as gifts by participants in the dedication.

Each person present chanted, MAY PEACE PREVAIL ON EARTH.  Bruce also brought ashes given to him at a sacred Hopi ceremony following September 11th tragic event.

An Irish Blessing by John O’Donohue, now deceased; a gatha by Thich Nhat Hanh was recited; and a Blessing by Oglala Sioux Lakota chief were also chanted.

Guests were treated to homemade mulled cider and finger foods and a very special sheet cake with MAY PEACE PREVAIL ON EARTH written on the cake.

The site of the dedication is at Heritage Village,  Southbury, CT.

Submitted by:  Judith E. Stevens

Peace Poles planted at Lake Baikal, Southern Siberia-RUSSIA

February 15th, 2017

My group visited Lake Bailkal and planted two Peace Poles, located in Irukutsk,  Siberia, Russia.

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Lake Baikal is considered the oldest ( 25 million years) and deepest lake in the world.  It contains 20% of the world’s total unfrozen freshwater reserve.

We stayed at the hotel in Fujil village in Orion Island where the Buryat tribes live.

We talked to the hotel owner about the Peace Pole Project and  of our wish to donate the Peace Pole.  The hotel owner happily accepted the Peace Pole.

He informed us that people from all over the world visit the island and that he most welcomed the offering of the Peace Pole planted at his hotel.

The Peace Pole planting took place on April 16th, 2016

Peace Pole at Marriot Hotel in Irukusk in Eastern Siberia-RUSSIA

On the April 18th, we stayed at Marriot hotel Irukutsk and planted a Peace Pole.  General manager of the hotel was from Lebanon and he is a great supporter of Peace and accepted our Peace Pole in his hotel.  Irukutsk is a very old and historical city that represents Eastern Siberia.

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We also visited a museum, monastery and the Russian Orthodox Cathedral, offering our presents of desktop Peace Poles and Origami  paper doll bookmarks.  The people were very happy about our presents and the message of Peace.  We  also made an honorary visit to the Japanese cemetery by Lake Baikal where many Japanese soldiers were captured and forced to labor after WWII and died in the frozen land.

May Peace be in Siberia!
May Peace be in Russia!
May Peace Prevail on Earth!

Respectfully submitted by: Kuniko Fukuse, Tokyo, Japan