Peace Pole by Ursline Sisters’ Motherhouse in Louisville, Kentucky, Reminds Us All To Be Peacemakers-USA

October 28th, 2015

July 2015

Something new now sprouts amid the green space behind the Ursuline Sisters’ Motherhouse: a Peace Pole, one of tens of thousands located in 180 countries proclaiming, “May peace prevail on Earth.” These words are written in different languages on the pole that was blessed by sisters and associates on July 27 during Community Days.image001

“This little plot shows that we are in solidarity with people throughout the world,” commented Sister Janet Marie Peterworth, president of the Ursuline Sisters of Louisville. “When we walk by and see the flag and the peace pole, they raise our consciousness and the call to be peace makers.”

Sister Janet Marie further explained, “The languages chosen for the pole, other than English, are Spanish, to connect us with our mission in Peru, French, to remind us that our Ursuline community is part of the Congregation of Paris, and German, to recognize our original mother foundation in Straubing Bavaria.”

The Peace Pole Project is a mission of The World Peace Prayer Society, which encourages public awareness of peace by building an international peace network among individuals and organizations in all fields, including education, science, culture and the arts to stimulate the global trend toward a culture of peace.

Peace Poles are planted or displayed to “plant” a positive thought in the minds and consciousness of the global community. Some noteworthy sites with Peace Poles include: the Pyramids of El Giza, Egypt, the Magnetic North Pole in Canada, the Allenby Bridge between Israel and Jordan, Mt. Fuji, Japan and at the United Nations in New York.

Erected and blessed in July 2015, the Peace Pole and flag stand on the campus of the Ursuline Sisters of Louisville, KY.

Be The Peace Global Teleconference on the International Day of Peace in ISRAEL-JAPAN-SCOTLAND-URUGUAY-USA

October 28th, 2015

September 21, 2015

WPPS Peace Representatives from Israel, Japan, Scotland, Uruguay and USA participated in Be The Peace Global Teleconference on the International Day of Peace followed by a gathering with members of the GaiaField Network, the Shift Network and other local peace activists.


CVH (Connecticut Valley Hospital) celebrates fifth annual International Day of Peace celebration – Hartford CT – USA

October 27th, 2015

September 18th, 2015

On Friday, September 18th, 2015, CVH, (Connecticut Valley Hospital) celebrated its’ fifth annual International Day of Peace celebration. This year marked the 31st Anniversary of the peace movement throughout the world.  The Culture of peace and non-violence is a commitment to peace-building, mediation, tolerance, acceptance, mutual respect, intercultural and interfaith dialogue and reconciliation.

CVH Pole IM, JD, Helene VartelasCropped
Left to right: Israel Martinez (CVH Director of Multicultural Affairs), Jim Dugan (WPPS), Helene Vartelas (CVH Chief Executive Officer)
Photo by Tracy Starbird

The theme for this year’s celebration was “Partnerships for Peace.” Each year the United Nations invites peoples of all nations to honor a cessation of hostilities and commemorate the International Day of Peace through education and public awareness on issues related to peace.

The celebration at CVH was held at the maximum security building and at the Yerbury Chapel, located on the grounds of the hospital. Participants were greeted by the hospital’s CEO, Helene Vartelas, Multicultural Affairs Director, Israel Martinez, and our keynote speaker, James Dugan, Manager of The World Peace Sanctuary in Wassaic, New York.  Mr. Dugan’s keynote address was well received by all participants including patients, staff and invited guests.  This celebration was marked by various scripture reading from the Qur’an, Torah and the Bible. The CVH Peace Pledge was read. Participants were also entertained by CVH’s pianist Louis Sorrentino, vocalist Amanda Halsted and a chorus who sang “ Blowin’ in The Wind” and “Get Together.”

JD speaking 2Cropped
Jim Dugan, The World Peace Sanctuary
Photo by Tracy Starbird

This annual event ended with the re-dedication of the CVH’s Peace Pole, orchestrated by Mr. James Dugan, Israel Martinez & Helene Vartelas. This year the Memorial Gardens in front of the Yerbury Chapel were also re-dedicated for the first time since 2002. The grounds of CVH were decorated this year with colorful “pinwheels for peace” made by patients and staff alike for this annual celebration.


The International Day of Peace at the United Nations-USA

October 27th, 2015

Deborah-Monica IDP 2015 ReportSeptember 21, 2015

The 2015 International Day of Peace began at the United Nations with Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the President of the70th General Assembly ringing the Peace Bell while 193 students raised the flags of the Member States during the Minute of Silence.

Peace Bell
Photo by Amanda Voisard

Following the ceremony, the Secretary-General joined 800 people in Conference Room 4 to begin the student program on the 2015 theme, “Partnerships for Peace–Dignity for All.” A full webcast of the event is at


The program was full of celebrities and rich with information and inspiration. Speakers included Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon; Messengers of Peace Dr. Jane Goodall, Michael Douglas and Yo-Yo Ma; UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Intercultural Dialogue Herbie Hancock; the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, Mr. Ahmad Alhendawi; Youth Moderator Ms. Zuhal Sultan, the founder of the National Youth Orchestra of Iraq; and the students from UNIFIL in Beirut, Lebanon, who were present live via satellite.

SG and Peace Pole
Photo by Dave Willard

Highlights included Yo-Yo Ma playing his cello and students from South Korea demonstrating advanced Taekwondo techniques, as well as students presenting their projects for peace. The United Nations International School Chamber Ensemble sang, “Heal the World.”

Another memorable moment was when a Security guard brought in a dog in response to Dr. Jane Goodall’s desire to have the non-human community represented. Dr. Jane immediately went to greet this special guest by the Peace Pole in the chamber.

Jane w Dog and P Pole - happy
Photo by Dave Willard

The traditional 12 noon Minute of Silence was introduced by the International Day of Peace NGO Committee Co-Chairs: Deborah Moldow, World Peace Prayer Society; Monica Willard, United Religions Initiative; Michael Johnson, Pathways To Peace; Shawn Sweeney, The Jane Goodall Institute. Mrs. Ban rang the World Peace Prayer Society’s Peace Bell, made of recycled weapons of war, and the silence was closed with the room saying together, “May Peace Prevail on Earth.”

The program concluded with a special 70th Anniversary Flag Ceremony for World Peace developed by the UN Department of Public Information. William Yotive, Education Outreach Director, showed the progression of countries joining the United Nations over the past seven decades by asking the students holding flags of the 193 UN Member States to rise in turn showing the decade in which that country had joined the United Nations.

Students with UN Member Paper Flags
Photo by Dave Willard

An accompanying slide show demonstrated show the growth from 51 Member States in 1946 to 193 in 2015. Then everyone was asked to hold high a paper flag of the United Nations and say together, “May Peace Prevail on Earth.” Mr. Yotive then asked them to repeat the message with more energy, and the call for peace rang out through the United Nations.


Report by Monica Willard and Deborah Moldow

11 Days of Global Unity: Peace – Sept 21 Global Webcast

October 27th, 2015

September 21, 2015

The final segment of the Summer of Peace webcasts focused on the 11 Days of Global Unity, September 11-21. The programs were organized and co-hosted by Rick Ulfik, founder of the We Campaign at Deborah Moldow was asked to report on the International Day of Peace events that had taken place that very day at the United Nations.

World Peace Flag Ceremony at Tillman Chapel in the Church Center for the United Nations-NYC-USA

October 27th, 2015

September 21, 2015

The Committee of Religious NGOs at the UN, the Church Center for the United Nations, and an impressive list of coalitions and organizations including the World Peace Prayer Society co-sponsored a day-long vigil for the International Day of Peace at the Tillman Chapel in the Church Center across the street from the United Nations on 21 September.


The event was entitled, “The Quest for a Just and Sustainable Peace,” with a keynote address on “A Tale of Two 70s: The 70th Anniversary of the Founding of the United Nations and the Hiroshima/Nagasaki Atomic Bombing.”  The winning artwork of the 2015 Peace Pals Art Exhibition with the theme “Love to Hiroshima–Love to Nagasaki” was on display throughout the day.


The Chaplain for the Church Center, which is run by the United Methodist Women, is Rev. Dionne Boissiere. She now has her own desktop Peace Pole, which she placed in a special area where those in attendance could write their prayers on a ribbon to post on a board. The Chapel was filled with prayers for peace all day long. Rev. Boissiere also put out a call to churches to ring their bells at 12 noon and for everyone to Tweet, #MayPeacePrevailOnEarth!


The World Peace Prayer Society held a World Peace Prayer Ceremony with the flags of all nations at 3:00, following the hourly Minute of Silence, accompanied by the Society’s Peace Bell made of recycled weapons of war. The flags has been raised that morning by students at the bell ringing ceremony by the Secretary-General of the United Nations. Now each one was presented in turn as everyone sent a prayer for peace to prevail in each country of the world in turn, accompanied by the transcendent music of the World Peace Violin.


Many special friends of the World Peace Prayer Society took part in the prayers, including Andrew Benson Greene of Sierra Leone, who has long worked with Bockarie Enssah, our Peace Representative there. He is an accomplished poet, who has written a book of poetry called “The Peace Pole.”


This heartfelt call to peace from the United Nations was surely felt around the world. May Peace Prevail on Earth.

Anchoring the Spirit of Peace: A Gathering of Souls Honoring the Spiritual Foundations of the U.N. International Day of Peace – Sept. 20 at the Nicholas Roerich Museum, New York-USA

October 27th, 2015

September 20, 2015

 A very special gathering of people dedicated to a spiritual path to peace came together on the eve of the UN International Day of Peace at the Nicholas Roerich Museum in Manhattan. The event was co-sponsored by the Museum, the United Religions Initiative and the World Peace Prayer Society.


The focus of the evening was a silent meditation around a small Peace Pole followed by deep sharing from the heart, in preparation for the wave of light that would circle the globe on the International Day of Peace.


Music was offered by Rick Ulfik on piano and Scarlet Rivera on the World Peace Violin. Attending were longtime WPPS Peace Representatives Jennifer and Charles Kim, Angelica Cubides and Monica Willard.


Dr. Dorothy Maver posted an article about it in Kosmos Journal on line at . She wrote: “Those gathered included representatives of worldwide organizations affiliated with the United Nations, along with artists, musicians and spiritual leaders. All were aware of the failure of major systems across the planet, yet held the hope that these breakdowns may be the source of an all-systems breakthrough. […]

 “The International Day of Peace is a unique opportunity for people around the world to hold a shared focus on peace, including a widely observed Minute of Silence at 12 noon in all time zones. The event at the Roerich Museum offered a moment to prepare for this special day by sharing both deep contemplation and practical intentions for building a culture of peace, while surrounded by the artworks of a visionary master. May Peace Prevail on Earth.”

14th Annual Vigil for International Peace and Ecology at the Central Park Band Shell-NYC-USA

October 27th, 2015


Susana Bastarrica, retired UN staff member, organized for the 14th consecutive year a colorful Vigil for International Peace and Ecology at the Band Shell in the center of Central Park.


The World Peace Prayer Society’s flags were there, along with a large “May Peace Prevail on Earth” banner.



Paul Sladkus was on hand to lead a Peace Party segment, with the beautiful Peace Pole made by students at Arlington High School in the center of the human peace sign.


Deborah Moldow led a World Peace Prayer Ceremony, and Susana kept the prayer “May Peace Prevail on Earth” as a refrain at the heart of this celebration of peace through music, prayers and joy.


  Photos by Andrew Kaen

Chapel at Croton Falls Rededicates Peace Pole – Sunday, Sept. 20 in Westchester, NY-USA

October 27th, 2015

September 20, 2015

 The Chapel at Croton Falls holds its annual Peace Pole rededication at an Interfaith Sunday honoring the UN International Day of Peace.


This year’s special guests were Rev. Patrick McCollum, who brought along Scarlet Rivera to play the World Peace Violin he has hand-crafted over the past nine years.



Those gathered enjoyed hearing the story of how the violin came to be and were entranced by its music.


Everyone was given the opportunity to bless the World Peace Violin, and then to pick up a flag for the Peace Pole re-dedication ceremony with prayers for peace sent to many countries to the music of the Peace Violin.


PEACE: The Overview Effect – Saturday, Sept. 19, New York City-USA

October 27th, 2015

September 19,2015

Deborah Moldow was invited by Kurt Johnson and Victoria Friedman, both members of Friends of the Institute of Noetic Sciences (FIONS New York) and the Vistar Foundation, to take part in an event for the New York City peace and new consciousness community on September 19, 2015. The event was linked to the International Day of Peace, with about 150 people attending.


Deborah conducted a visualization for world peace based on the Minute of Silence that would circle the globe on September 21st. Alan Steinfeld provided peace images including Peace Pole pictures for the projections shown on a large screen. Musician Scarlet Rivera accompanied the meditation on the World Peace Violin, hand crafted by Rev. Patrick McCollum. The result was sheer magic!


The visualization closed with everyone saying, “May Peace Prevail on Earth.” Later, the entire program closed with everyone sending peace prayers and the audience joining in. Everyone then repeated, “May Peace Prevail on Earth” three times more.

Other friends of the World Peace Prayer Society who took part in the event were the very gifted Kristin Hoffmann, who played so beautifully for the launch of the Fuji Declaration at Mt. Fuji in May, and Rick Ulfik, founder of We, The World and the 11 Days of Global Unity.