Monday, September 18, 2006



Let there be peace on earth, and let peace begin with me. Let peace begin
with me. That may not be what the United Nations had in mind when it passed
a resolution in 1981 to establish the International Day of Peace. The United
Nations General Assembly decided that it would be appropriate "to devote a
specific time to concentrate the efforts of the United Nations and its
Member States, as well as of the whole of mankind, to promoting the ideals
of peace and to giving positive evidence of their commitment to peace in all
viable ways... (The International Day of Peace) should be devoted to
commemorating and strengthening the ideals of peace both within and among
all nations and peoples."

At the time the Resolution and a later amended version making September 21
the official day of peace passed, the emphasis was on the cessation of
hostilities. In Santa Barbara we have held marches and rallies expressing
our opposition to war. But not this year. Mother Teresa said ""I was once
asked why I don't participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will
never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I'll be there."
What's the difference? Perhaps Noble Peace Prize Laureate Máiread Corrigan
Maguire said it best. "We frail humans are at one time capable of the
greatest good and, at the same time, capable of the greatest evil. Change
will only come about when each of us takes up the daily struggle ourselves
to be more forgiving, compassionate, loving and above all joyful in the
knowledge that, by some miracle of grace, we can change as those around us
can change too."

For those who feel similarly we offer an inspiring program that will nourish
and elevate the spirit. Beginning at 6:30 p.m. at the Courthouse Sunken
Gardens (Anapamu and Anacapa streets), there will be a proclamation of peace
by Mayor Blum, words of hope and peace by the Reverend Mark Asman,
Babatunde Folayemi, Stephen Sherrill and the Reverend Karen Weingard.
Live music will be provided by some exceptional local talent - Lisa Lavie and
Lois Mahalia,and Melissa Ramsey-Demeter, as well as Los Angeles recording artist
DionMial backed by the Center of the Heart Band featuring: Eje` Lynn-Jacobs,
George Friedenthal, Chris Judge, James Spitzer and Chris Thomas. At the
close of the program, there will be a silent candle light vigil.

This is an event for people of all ages, faiths and political affiliations.
A place where we believe that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens
can change the world. Just like President Dwight David Eisenhower said, "in
the goodness of time, all peoples will come to live together in a peace
guaranteed by the binding force of mutual respect and love." That's how we
plan to celebrate peace.

No comments: