September 21, 2023
The Interfaith Peace Project continues its observance of the International Day of Peace, September 21, 2023, by sending out this reflection by Thomas P. Bonacci, C.P.
May Peace Prevail on Earth!
We will continue our ongoing observance of the International Day, by sending out a reflection on the twenty-first of every month. We invite you to share in this effort by sending any articles or information that you would like to share to:
Thomas P. Bonacci, C.P
The International Day of Peace
September 21, 2023
by Thomas P. Bonacci, C.P.
The International Day of Peace (September 21) is a time to reflect and discern how we might be people of peace all the time. The philosophy behind this important day assumes that if we can be peaceful for one day, then one day at a time, we can be people of peace all the days of our lives.
Seminars, gatherings, prayer services, and celebrations mark how many people will observe the day. Over the years, the International Day of Peace has inspired and transformed the lives of millions of people. Dr. Martin Luther King famously said, “Peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but a means by which we arrive at that goal.”
Several years ago, in the midst of the Covid-19 emergency, I decided to walk the streets of San Francisco. I was tired of isolating myself and needed to be with some people in a City famous for its street life. The City was abandoned, lonely, and oddly quiet. That is except for one man singing at the top of his lungs.
I walked up to him as he paused to recognize my presence. He smiled as I asked why he sang so beautifully to an empty street. He looked at me with kindness beaming on his face and said in a soft and gentle voice, “You are here. I sing for you.” He told me he sings to bless the World. I thanked him for his time, wishing him well. He burst full-throatily into song as I continued my lonely walk through the streets I love.
Peace is a song we can sing at any moment in our lives. Peace lives deep within us, waiting for us to give it birth in the World as it is. Think of the time you were gentle with someone who was rude. Recall the time you lovingly forgave someone who failed. Never forget the moment you gave of yourself to a perfect stranger. These are the songs of peace being sung all over the World.
May the peace we celebrate on this day be the peace we live each and every day.