Dear ladies, friends, and families,
What does the word "peace" mean to you?
Each year on September 21, the UN celebrates the International Day of Peace, yet we might wonder what there is to celebrate.
Even right here in the U.S., during this very month dedicated to peace, police shootings of black men continue, as in Charlotte, North Carolina, and Tulsa, Oklahoma, inflaming racial tensions regardless of whether the killings were justified or not.
However, whatever things may look like, the last thing to do now would be to give up on peace!
Earlier this month, I and my husband Bob attended radio talk show host Al Cole's annual "People of Distinction Humanitarian Awards" reception in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill. He has been highlighting, uplifting, and endorsing "unsung heroes" in the community from all walks of life (see article below). That evening, his organization bestowed awards on 20 humanitarian leaders from small but effective organizations providing a wide variety of amazing services to people in need.
What Bob and I took away from Al's awards reception was hope in knowing that there is still so much good in the world, and here in the United States, that there are many "unsung heroes" who sacrifice and live for the sake of others, quietly and consistently, and ARE making an impact for the better!
A very stirring and moving moment also took place this month on September 17 when two mothers, representing black and white Americans, respectively, walked across the Bridge of Peace at the Washington Mall next to the U.S. Capitol building as a part of the "America and God's Will" 40th Anniversary celebration. One of the mothers, Elzabieta Byrne, lost her daughter due to murder but was able to forgive the perpetrator and even show compassion and understanding toward his parents.
Closing with inspirational quotes as food for thought:
"Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding."
- Albert Einstein
"I offer you peace. I offer you love. I offer you friendship. I see your beauty. I hear your need. I feel your feelings."
- Mahatma Gandhi
What does "peace" mean to you?