Bahai News - Program focuses on world peace
Program focuses on world peace
By Roy Wood, Post staff reporter
As Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat's Fatah faction called for more
violence in the West Bank, and the Philippine government warned of more
terrorist attacks there, Greater Cincinnati's religious and community
leaders gathered in Newport Sunday to pray for world peace.
About 600 people, including representatives from nine world religions,
turned out for the Second Annual Interfaith Celebration of World Peace.
The 2 1/2-hour service at the Syndicate was capped by the ringing of the
World Peace Bell across Fifth Street.
The afternoon's program was to offer "a moment of reflection... an
opportunity for celebration," said Cynthia Goodman, whose Millennium
Monument Center World Peace Bell organization, along with the National
Conference for Community and Justice, put together the event.
Participants wore everything from turbans and robes to Native American
headbands and shawls. The Native American, Baha'i, Buddhist, Christian,
Hindu, Islamic, Jain, Jewish and Sikh traditions were represented.
The arrangement of singing, dancing, chanting and instrumentals was meant
to make "a moving and hopeful statement," Ms. Goodman said.
Mahatma Gandhi came up several times during the service.
Xavier University theologian Brennan Hill noted, for example, that Gandhi
believed that each of the world's religions "has some unique insight
"We all believe in the sacredness of our creation," he said. "We all
believe in human dignity. We all value love, compassion, forgiveness and
freedom. And yet in the name of our religion, throughout history there
have been so many oppressions, slaveries and holocausts and atrocities
that are still going on today."
The New Year's Eve peace celebrations were part of the plan when Fort
Thomas businessman Wayne Carlisle commissioned the 66,000-pound Peace
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