By UPF Germany, Robert Bentele
At the occasion of the International Day of Peace of the United Nations the Universal Peace Federation Munich held an inter-religious peace prayer meeting on Saturday 24. September 2016. Our group could not excel through a big quantity, but through the absolute certainty that our prayers will bear fruits.
Rev. Moon, the founder of UPF, once said: “When you pray for the world, you may not see immediate changes around yourselves, but far away from you forces of war start to crumble. The effects of your prayers can be felt at a faraway place.”
Twenty representatives of five different religious communities came together and presented their requests of peace with heart and seal. The focus of our prayers were on the Middle East in particular on Syria. First we showed a video about the short speech of the Secretary General of the UN, Ban Ki- moon, on that day. Next the host and moderator, Robert Bentele, presented the Principles of Peace of the UPF that is in a consultative status to the UN and supports its endeavors for peace.
Every speaker lighted a candle at the little altar.
Marlene Straub, priest of the Inayati Sufi-Order and an ambassador for peace, presented a prayer of Hazrat Inayat Khan, the founder of that order: …. “Oh, peacemaker, before you try to make peace in the world create first peace within yourself. If a person wants to experience peace in the world, he must first create peace within himself. …. Has he once reached peace within himself then he has enough strength to invest himself in the battle of live internally as well as externally.”
Gisela Muenster, theologian, then presented a prayer from the Rom. Cath. tradition asking God for light in the darkness of human situations: … God, we ask you for those who live in darkness of hate: grant them the experience of love. … God, we ask you for those who live in the darkness of war: grant them peace.
Marion Tschenal from the Scientology Church Munich read a text and the credo of her church. Then she lighted several candles for her requests of peace and freedom.
The following speaker was Gottfried Hutter, Rom. Cath. theologian and AfP. He reminded us again on the biblical story of Jacob and Esau, how they got into a nearly lethal conflict and how they could solve it and reconcile in tears after separation of 21 years. This peacemaking example he tirelessly tries to show to responsible persons in the Middle East and hopes that it may be applied on a higher level.
The program came to a conclusion through a prayer of peace from the tradition of the Family Federation of World Peace and Unification that was presented by Annette Bentele and then through a vivid exchange and discussion with a rich buffet of cakes and coffee.