Germany: UN International Day of Peace

Prepared by UPF Germany

On the occasion of the UN International Day of Peace, which is celebrated each year on 21 September, UPF Munich organized an interreligious peace meeting, as they have done regularly over the past ten years. This year the event was held in cooperation with, and on the premises of, the Celebrity Centre of the Church of Scientology, and was attended by an audience of over thirty representing different religious communities.

Billie Wegmann, moderator and pastor of the Scientology Church offered some introductory remarks and then Annette Bentele, UPF, gave a short review of the background of this commemorative day and read the speech given by the Secretary General of the UNO.

She was followed by Robert Bentele, UPF, who gave a talk, illustrated by slides, about the Peace Road Project 2018 bicycle tour in Munich and Regensburg.

The moderator then guided us in the art of communication as a way to realize peace in daily life through exchange and understanding and even let us practice with each other on the spot.

To commemorate the recently celebrated 70 year anniversary of the Charter of Human Rights of the United Nations, a video sequence giving an overview of the right to the free practice of religion and respect was shown.

Robert Bentele then spoke about the significance of marriage and the family as the best school of love for a peace-loving society, followed by the offering, with his wife, of a peace blessing for all those present.

Recognition was given in this meeting to the fact that the prayers for peace from different religious communities have great significance.

Gottfried Hutter, a Roman Catholic theologian, dedicated his prayer especially for peace in the Holy Land. The Imam of the Ahmadiyya-community Neufahrn, Malik Usman Naveed, remarked that nobody was excluded from Allah‘s love and recited a Surah (chapter) from the

Koran. Marlene Straub, Priest of the Inayati (Sufi) Order recited a prayer for unity and peace from Pir Zia Inayat Khan, the current spiritual leader of her Order. Billi Wegmann recited the prayer for total peace from the Scientology Church, and the South-Sudan Christian, Rita Okasa, prayed the Lord’s Prayer in her Arabian native tongue. In his closing prayer, Wolf Osterheld from UPF mentioned that God as Heavenly Parents has the goal of establishing a united world family.

A further highlight was prayers set to music by Lion Wegmann on the piano, and Nenad Butic (classical guitar) and his daughter Amelia (vocals).

All the participants could be certain that their prayers not only knocked at heaven’s door, but were really heard by heaven.

A lively and fruitful discussion continued over lovingly prepared snacks, coffee and cake.

 

Robert Bentele, UPF (English-Catriona Valenta)

For the content of the peace prayers, please contact: muenchen@upf-deutschland.de

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