Film Premiere 21 September #LondonIsOpen Places of Worship

Film Premiere 21 September #LondonIsOpen Places of Worship

londonisopen-21-septJoin the London Peace Network, artists, film-makers and religious leaders at St Martin-in-the-Fields Church in Trafalgar Square for the premiere of a new short film, followed by a peace breakfast to mark the UN International Day of Peace.

Register here by 20 September to join us on Wednesday 21 September 8am – 9am.  Download the flyer.

The film shows London places of worship open and welcoming and is the first in a series of short films and events.

The film will be shown at Southwark Cathedral on 1 October in the presence of the Mayor of London, who initiated the #LondonIsOpen campaign.

We look forward to seeing you!

Lord Bates completes Walk for Truce from Buenos Aires to Rio

Lord Bates completes Walk for Truce from Buenos Aires to Rio

Our Patron, Lord Bates, has completed his Walk for Peace.  With the support of Lady Xuelin, he has walked 3,000 km from Buenos Aires to Rio, arriving in time for the opening of Rio2016.

The Walks for Peace raise awareness of the Olympic Truce, a UN-mandated break in war and conflict from 7 days before the Olympic Games until 7 days after the Paralympic Games.  Lord and Lady Bates have also raised £250,000 in sponsorship for UNICEF.

Read Lord Bates’ blog.  Here is an excerpt from his last post:

“I think that’s it for this year except to say that our walk was of course to draw attention to the Olympic truce through which signatories seek to set aside differences and work for reconciliation for the period seven days before the Olympic Games until seven days after the closing of the Paralympic Games. The Rio Olympic truce was signed by 180 countries at the United Nations General Assembly in October last year. Looking at our tv screens and events in Syria, Ukraine, Afghanistan, Turkey, Pakistan, Iraq, Thailand, North Korea and France we might wonder what that means in reality.

It is a fair point but just because some people choose not to live up to their international obligations or rise above their tribal differences is not a reason to lower the bar but rather to encourage those who fall short to reach higher. That the world is a better place for the Olympics & Paralympics and the truce that transcends them. That peace and reconciliation was not just part of the ancient Olympic Games of 3000 years ago, it was their entire purpose and point. That ultimately peace is possible it just requires much more courage than war on the part of participants to achieve it. The type of courage, desire, single-minded purpose and ambition we witness everyday through the lives of our Olympians and Paralympians.”

Congratulations – and on behalf of the London Peace Network, thank you for keeping the Olympic Truce ideal alive!

Peace Cafe 17 March 6pm

Peace Cafe 17 March 6pm

Aff_CafesDepending on the origin of our food, clothes, cosmetics or household goods, our seemingly innocent actions can contribute to human and environmental disasters somewhere on the globe.  The Rana Plaza disaster in Bangladesh highlighted the direct links between our consumer choices here in the UK and lives overseas.

Ethical choices and consumerism is the topic of our next Peace Café, on Tuesday 17 March at 6pm at LBFN’s home at Collaboration House, 77 Charlotte Street, W1T 4PW (Goodge Street tube).

Our special guest is Shehroze Khan from MADE in Europe, a grassroots faith-based charity raising awareness about environmental protection, justice and poverty, and our conversation will include diverse views and a wide range of experiences.

Let us know if you plan to come along.  Bring a little food (veggie) to share.  Everyone can brew the change.  We look forward to seeing you there!

London Boroughs Faiths Network

Aff_CafesDepending on the origin of our food, clothes, cosmetics or household goods, our seemingly innocent actions can contribute to human and environmental disasters somewhere on the globe.  The Rana Plaza disaster in Bangladesh highlighted the direct links between our consumer choices here in the UK and lives overseas.

Ethical choices and consumerism is the topic of our next Peace Café, on Tuesday 17 March at 6pm at LBFN’s home at Collaboration House, 77 Charlotte Street, W1T 4PW (Goodge Street tube).

Our special guest is Shehroze Khan from MADE in Europe, a grassroots faith-based charity raising awareness about environmental protection, justice and poverty, and our conversation will include diverse views and a wide range of experiences.

Let LBFN know if you plan to join us.  Bring a little food to share.  Everyone can brew the change.  We look forward to seeing you there!

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The meaning of Jerusalem – Peace Café

The meaning of Jerusalem – Peace Café

Peace Cafe 1A rich discussion on what Jerusalem means to us from our different traditions – at the first Peace Café.  Not the easiest of topics – but we learned from each other’s stories, experiences and from our shared and diverse histories.

People brought delicious food from across the continents: Bangladeshi biscuits, a fragrant rose water dish from Mauritius, rice and dal from India, dates from North Africa, trifle from England, pizza from Italy and hummus from Israel.  It was a feast!

Join us next time on 12 January 6-8pm – bring a dish to share or bring ingredients to cook as we gather together.

Talking Peace Festival 8 September – 3 October

Talking Peace Festival 8 September – 3 October

From our friends at International Alert – the expanding Talking Peace Festival this year . . .

tpf pink hash date“The Talking Peace Festival is a series of events taking place this autumn around International Peace Day on 21 September.

Using the universal language of creativity, the festival will illustrate the importance of dialogue in resolving conflicts in venues across London. Join us for talks, comedy, art, food, photography and more!

The full programme will be announced later in August, but here is a flavour of what to expect:

  • Launch party, Shoreditch Village Hall, 8 September (RSVP here)
  • Peace Booth, Old Street underground station, 8-14 September
    Strike a pose for peace in our Peace Photo Booth and enjoy live art demonstrations as part of our #Art4peace campaign. Free.
  • #Art4peace campaign, various locations throughout September. Talented street artists unite in painting campaign for peace in spaces around East London. They will include: Benjamin Murphy, Dan Kitchener, David Walker, Faunagraphic, Fipsi Seilern (Pang), Francesca McHugh (Love Artist), Ibrahim Fakhri, Jim McElvaney, Joel Bergner, Lana Hughes (Lana Alana), Magnus Gjoen, Mr Dane, Paul Curtis (Moose), Pure Evil, Suzko and Tarek Tuma.
  • Takeover of Shoreditch Art Wall, 17-19 Great Eastern Street, 13-19 September
    Come and see this iconic Shoreditch mural transform into a giant piece of street art – for peace! Free.
  • Rwanda photo exhibition, South Bank, 17-28 September
    Photography from award-winning photojournalist Carol Allen-Storey, featuring the stories of young Rwandans, their reflections on the genocide and hopes for the future. Free.
  • Conflict Kitchen, Queen of Hoxton, 20-21 September
    A pop-up grill serving dishes from the Middle East over the weekend of International Peace Day. With recipes from renowned chefs Anissa Helou, Yotam Ottolenghi and Claudia Roden.
  • Are you Taking the Peace?, The Comedy Store, 22 September (Book tickets here)
    Our annual benefit comedy night featuring Rich Hall, Stewart Francis, Holly Walsh, Matt Rees, Daniel Simonsen, Nick Revell and Alistair Barrie (MC).
  • Various, Hoxton Gallery, 23 September-3 October
    Exhibitions, talks, workshops and more!
  • No Pressure to be Funny, The Phoenix – Cavendish Square, 28 September
    The highly acclaimed satirical panel show presents an International Alert special, chaired by LBC Radio’s James O’Brien.

For updates, follow us @TalkPeaceFest and use the hashtag #TalkingPeace to share your views!”

MUJU 48 hour Peace Lab | 24-25 August | NW London

MUJU 48 hour Peace Lab | 24-25 August | NW London

Young? Muslim? Jewish? In North West London?

MUJU_POSTER_PEACE_final_small

The MUJU Crew bring Muslims and Jews together through a shared passion for creating art.

In this time of heightened tension MUJU aims to provide an arena for creative dialogue by hosting a two-day theatre lab in which Muslim and Jewish performers (both professionals and those with a passion for theatre/ arts) come together to explore/ question the theme of Peace, in all it’s possible meanings, through theatre.
The outcome will be a piece of theatre that will be shared on the Monday evening.
The entire weekend will be facilitated and filmed to be made into a short documentary. This will be screened at various events in the lead up to the International Day of Peace on September 21st.
WHERE: Al-Khoei Benevolent Foundation, Chevening Road, London, NW6 6TN

WHEN: 10-6pm Sunday 24th and Monday 25th August 2014.

Places are limited! If you would like to be part of this creative experience then please contact info@muju.org.uk to book.
Peace conference in London: 15 September

Peace conference in London: 15 September

Heads up on a timely event on Monday 15 September – a peace-building conference at St Ethelburga’s Centre for Reconciliation & Peace, London to mark the UN International Day of Peace.

st ethelburga workshopPeace-Building in the 21st Century: Celebrating Achievements and Hopes, Confronting Real Issues

  • skills-based workshops
  • tackling conflict in non-violent ways
  • panel discussions
  • hot topics of concern

Save the date – more information coming soon …

Peace Pagoda Ceremony 21 June 2pm

Peace Pagoda Ceremony 21 June 2pm

Photo: Paul Gillett

Join Buddhists & friends from different traditions on Saturday June 21st 2-5pm at the Peace Pagoda in Battersea Park, Albert Bridge Road, SW11 4NJ.   The 29th anniversary of the Pagoda will be celebrated with prayers for peace, devotional music and dance and will be followed by tea and light refreshments. Everyone is welcome to offer incense, flowers, candles.  Gyoro Nagase (Nipponzan Myohoji Buddhist Order) offers prayers and serves the Pagoda on a daily basis.

Flights for Peace across the Thames on 21 September

Flights for Peace across the Thames on 21 September

Bring friends and family to ‘fly’ across the Thames on Sunday 21 September!  Download the flyer here.

We’ll be meeting up with people from all over the capital & flying together in the beautiful gondolas – a great way to celebrate the UN International Day of Peace in style.

If you’re on twitter, the hashtag is #flights4peace, as well as the general #peaceday tag.

Many of the London Peace Network team will be flying.  We look forward to seeing you there!

Can Christianity continue to sanction war?

Can Christianity continue to sanction war?

The Rt Rev Peter Price, the former Anglican Bishop of Bath and Wells, preached at St Paul’s Cathedral on 11 May as part of  the series “What I want to say now.

He looks at the history of Christianity and the Constantinian compromise which ‘caused radical confusions in the relations of church and state’ .  He tells the story of Martin of Tours and asks,

What does it mean to be a human being today? How are we to live? What kind of future do we want? What are the building blocks for peace among peoples? How are we to live well, and live well together?’

He suggests three strategies: listening to the voice and place of local persons in conflict; all conflicts are local even if they have global consequences – peace building requires the recognition that each conflict is unique; not taking sides, recognising that peace building is not a soft option.

Watch the sermon on our video page here and find the full text here.

 

24 Hours for World Peace

Here’s a new initiative to link together people across the continents who are working for justice and peace – an online vigil on Wednesday 1 January.

24 hours for world peaceThe goal is to

show the hope we hold and share for all of humanity on the first day of the New Year.”

Sign up here and download the flyer here.  The deadline is Friday 20 December, so register soon.

The London Peace Network will be posting a message and we hope you will do the same!

24 Hours for World Peace on 1st January

24 Hours for World Peace on 1st January

Here’s a new initiative to link together people across the continents who are working for justice and peace – an online vigil on Wednesday 1 January.

The goal is to

show the hope we hold and share for all of humanity on the first day of the New Year.”

Sign up here and download the flyer here.

The London Peace Network will be posting a message and we hope you will do the same!

Flights for Peace

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Baha’i, Muslim and Christian women on the #Flights4Peace. (photo: Phoebe Robertson)

Londoners from many different traditions and backgrounds came together on Sunday 22nd September.

They marked the UN International Day of Peace by flying across the Thames together, taking the Emirates Airline from Greenwich to Newham.

David Wardrop, who chairs UNA Westminster (a member of the London Peace Network) and who organised the event, said

As well as prestige events, reported elsewhere, we set out to organise one which would bring together ordinary people of faith and no faith, to discover similarities and explore differences.

“Let’s get out of our comfort zones and meet people we would never normally talk to”.

Everyone who participated received a certificate.  The conversations went on well beyond the flights – into the café at Crystal on the Newham side of the river and back again to Greenwich.

You’ll find more photos in the Gallery and news of many other events on our Facebook page.

East London Mosque marks Peace Day by welcoming visitors

Here are some pictures from the London Muslim Centre and East London Mosque which marked Peace Day by inviting visitors from a wide range of religion and belief traditions.  They exchanged messages of peace and observed Friday Prayers – Salaatul-Jumu’a.

Abdullah Faliq at LMC

Abdullah Faliq of The Cordoba Foundation addressing the visitors.

Jon Dal Din at LMC

Jon Dal Din of Westminster Interfaith taking part in the discussion on peace.

Angus Ritchie at ELM

Revd Dr Angus Ritchie, Director of the Contextual Theology Centre and an Anglican priest, speaking at the event.

Dilowar at LMC

Dilowar Khan, Executive Director of the East London Mosque and London Muslim Centre speaking to visitors from across the capital.

Message of peace from Grand Mufti of Bosnia

Bosnia letterhead

MESSAGE OF GRAND MUFTI OF BOSNIA HE HUSEIN EF. KAVAZOVIC

FOR INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PEACE

Today, we perceive religion as a tissue that connects our kind on Earth. At the same time, it interprets and clarifies the meaning of our lives.

All religious teachings foster peace, because only the peace gives a chance to people to save their souls and live in harmony with each other.

The Koran teaches that one of the God’s names is the Peace-Giver and the Overseer (Koran, Al-Hasr, 23).

Monotheistic religions profess a belief in one God, who addressed the people by His word, which is preserved in the books. These books we study and interpret. The books say that God created Adam from the first substance of its existence: We created man from an extract of clay (Koran, Al Muminun, 12).

The Prophet of Islam said: You are the sons of Adam, and Adam was created from clay (Al-Tirnidhi, Sunen).

In this, seemingly simple act of creation we recognize the following: God did not create people to fight one another and shed blood of each other nor to live in such triviality and be driven by such frivolous urges.

On the occasion of September 21, the International Day of Peace we pray to God to guide us to the paths of peace and that we resort to each other in order to overcome an abyss between us.

Sarajevo, September 19th 2013          Husein ef. Kavazovic       Grand Mufti of Bosnia

Teachers! Classroom activities & assembly ideas

TES

Plenty of ideas and resources for school on the TES site: conflict resolution, wallcharts, global citizenship, refugee stories, making peace doves and much more on peace, for use around the UN International Day of Peace (21 September) or at other times of the year.  Register for free and then download the materials.

Sukkot sermon on peace at Alyth Synagogue

Sukkot sermon on peace at Alyth Synagogue

Rabbi Maurice Michaels preached on the UN International Day of Peace yesterday at the North Western Reform Synagogue (Alyth).  He said peace is of the highest importance in Judaism.

In the midrash, Sifrei, Rabbi Levi said, ‘Peace is precious, for the blessings after the Sh’ma and at the end of the Amidah conclude with a prayer for peace. The priests’ blessing also ends with a prayer for peace, for none of the blessings is at all beneficial unless peace is also present.’

Pirkei Avot, the manual of ethical teachings of the sages, includes Rabban Gamliel’s saying, ‘The world is sustained by three things – by justice, by truth, and by peace, as it is said’ – quoting the prophet Zechariah – ‘Render in your gates judgements that are true and make for peace’.

And, of course, we have Hillel’s instruction, ‘Be of the disciples of Aaron, loving peace and pursuing peace’.

The Jewish community is observing the time of Sukkot at the moment.

Rabbi Michaels went on

the mishnah asks ‘Who is the greatest hero?’ and responds, ‘One who changes an enemy into a friend’.

Download the full sermon here.

Londoners from all religious and non-religious traditions are invited to join together for the Flights for Peace on Sunday afternoon (22nd September) at 2pm-3pm.

Flights for Peace across the Thames on Sunday 2-3pm

Flights for Peace across the Thames on Sunday 2-3pm

Bring friends and family to ‘fly’ across the Thames on Sunday afternoon!  Download the flyer.

We’ll be meeting up with people from all over the capital & flying together in the beautiful gondolas – a great way to celebrate the International Day of Peace in style.  You can register here https://flightsforpeace.eventbrite.co.uk/.

If you’re on twitter, the hashtag is #flights4peace, as well as the general #peaceday tag.

Many of the London Peace Network team will be flying.  We look forward to seeing you there!

St Peter’s Walworth welcomes Old Kent Road Mosque

St Peter’s Walworth welcomes Old Kent Road Mosque

St Peter’s Church of England, just off the Walworth Road on Liverpool Grove, SE17 2HH is welcoming visitors from the Old Kent Road Mosque on Sunday morning at the 10.30am service to mark the UN International Day of Peace.  If you’d like to join them, contact Fr Andrew Moughtin-Mumby or see their tumblr site.

East London Mosque marks peace day

East London Mosque marks peace day

East London Mosque is inviting visitors to hear the Friday sermon on the subject of peace and to join them for a light lunch today.

Dilowar H Khan, Executive Director, says

“I would like to cordially invite you to join us to observe the sermon on Friday the 20th September at 12.30pm which will be on Hajj and the message of peace as part of the international day of peace. The sermon will start at 1:20pm which will be followed by a short reception (with light lunch) at 2.00pm.”

We look forward to hearing about the event and seeing the photos!

Download your flyer for Peace Day!

Is your local Islamic centre, synagogue or church marking the UN International Day of Peace next weekend?

The idea is very simple:

  1. Invite neighbours or visitors to your place of worship
  2. Exchange messages of peace (printed on the back of the flyers, or use your own)
  3. If you like, offer some hospitality – maybe some juice or a cup of tea

Islamic centres are inviting visitors during or after Salaatul-Jumu’a (20th September), synagogues are inviting visitors to enjoy the hospitality of the sukkah on Saturday (21st) and churches are inviting visitors for Sunday worship (22nd) or a cup of tea afterwards.

Take a photograph, send it in with a line or two about your event and we will publish it here and on our Facebook page.  You will be joining thousands of communities across the globe which are marking Peace Day with a huge range of activities.

This was a very popular event last year, with hundreds of groups joining in.  This year we are supported by a range of religious and multifaith organisations.

Download the Islamic centre flyer here

Download the synagogue flyer here.

Download the church flyer here.

Please get in touch if you would like any further information or if we can help in any way.

Churches invite guests to visit on 22nd September

The salaam / shalom / peace bird is flying again!

Visit our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/sept21 for all the latest news and information – like, link, share!

Islamic centres will be inviting in visitors to share messages of peace on Friday 20th September.  Synagogues will be doing the same on Saturday 21st September and churches on Sunday 22nd September.

peace_leaflet_church_webThe flyer for churches is available now – download it here.  The flyers for Islamic centres and synagogues will be available soon – keep a look-out on the Facebook page or bookmark this blog.

Six simple steps towards peaceful relationships in your neighbourhood:

  1. Decide when you would like your visitors to arrive.
  2. Contact your local faith forum to find people from different religious traditions.
  3. Invite them to your Islamic centre, synagogue or church, along with any information they may find useful for their visit.
  4. When they arrive, exchange the messages of peace on the back of the flyer – or your own messages of peace.
  5. You may offer a cup of tea or some simple hospitality – it is up to you.
  6. If you would like to stay in touch, exchange contact details before your guests leave.

UN International Day of Peace 2013

salaam bird croppedPlans are moving swiftly ahead for peace-building events on

  • Friday 20 September
  • Saturday 21 September
  • Sunday 22 September

Islamic centres will be opening their doors to visitors on Friday to exchange messages of peace, synagogues will be inviting visitors in for refreshments on Saturday and we also have plans for Flights for Peace over the Thames!

A schools programme, all-faiths-and-none football matches and much more is in the pipeline for a fantastic weekend.

Our next planning meeting is on Wednesday 21 Augustbe in touch with your thoughts and suggestions.

If you have any plans for marking the UN International Day of Peace this year, let us know and we’ll post details here.

UN International Day of Peace 2013

UN International Day of Peace 2013

salaam bird croppedPlans are moving swiftly ahead for peace-building events on

  • Friday 20 September
  • Saturday 21 September
  • Sunday 22 September

Islamic centres will be opening their doors to visitors on Friday to exchange messages of peace, synagogues will be inviting visitors in for refreshments on Saturday and we also have plans for Flights for Peace over the Thames!

A schools programme, all-faiths-and-none football matches and much more is in the pipeline for a fantastic weekend.

Our next planning meeting is on Wednesday 21 Augustbe in touch with your thoughts and suggestions.

If you have any plans for marking the UN International Day of Peace this year, let us know and we’ll post details here.

New film – Pakistan: the Pride and the Promise

New film – Pakistan: the Pride and the Promise

We talked to so many remarkable people and groups in Pakistan – meet them here on the film we made as we travelled around.  Be inspired by their insight, perseverance and courage.

The film is now part of the RSA’s Pakistan Calling festival which includes some fantastic work.

Pakistan: the Pride and the Promise from London Boroughs Faiths Network on Vimeo.

Interested?  Have links with Pakistan &/or with diaspora groups in the UK?  Get in touch as we plan the next steps.  London Boroughs Faiths Network, Wandsworth Community Empowerment Network and Stockwell Green Community Services is a strong coalition.

We’re pursuing our work to support strategic links between groups in the UK and in Pakistan which are strengthening civic society and which are building communities of peace.

The film of our London-Pakistan event with Rt Hon Justine Greening MP and Sadiq Khan MP will be available soon.  Our thanks go to the many people and groups we are working with and to the FCO for their initial grant under the Olympic Truce.

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Rt Hon Justine Greening receiving a World Peace Tartan scarf at the Minority-Majority Pakistan-UK event in London.  L-R Catriona Robertson (LBFN Convener), Rt Hon Justine Greening, Toaha Qureshi MBE (Stockwell Green Community Services) & the Bishop of Lahore, Rt Rev Irfan Jamil.