Dear Mr. Editor:
A “Minute of Silence, a Moment of Sound”—these are the watchwords of the United Nations International Peace Day.
On the third Tuesday in September at noon, people throughout the world are invited to join the delegates of the United Nations General Assembly in a minute of silent reflection on world peace.
Then the Peace Bell of the United Nations will be rung. And across the world, other bells will peal as people gather together in the name of peace.
In 1981, the United Nations General Assembly declared that the third Tuesday of September would be an official International Peace Day. In 1986, Canada was the first country to participate nationwide in this important global event.
The carillon at the Peace Tower in Ottawa peals forth its recognition of this day for peace, and across the nation, countless Canadians join people in other lands in the common belief in world peace.
Why should we set aside this minute of silence and this moment of sound for peace? It is through our actions more than our words that we emphasize our belief in world peace.
In that minute of silence, some make the journey to their inward selves and contemplate their individual responsibility for attitudes and actions of peace. Others pray for peace while still others, in that minute of silence, pay tribute to all who strive for peace.
As the United Nations General Assembly envisioned when it proclaimed an International Day of Peace, people from every walk of life, and political and religious persuasion throughout the world, join together in a common humanity which rises above our differences in concentrates on world peace.
Everyone can contribute to the groundswell of peace consciousness. Wherever we are at noon on the third Tuesday in September, at home, at work, at school, or attending a civic ceremony, we can be part of the growing awareness of working toward world peace.
We can prepare ourselves to observe the silence and sound by sharing the coming event with others. When hearts and minds dwell on peace, the spirit of hope flows across the face of the earth, renewing humankind’s faith in efforts toward world peace.
Each one of us can play a small but vital part by our thoughts, attitudes, and commitment to world peace.
(A Peal for Peace, F.F.)