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Coming Together in Unity for Peace
Report: Prayers taken from a Pax Christi USA remembrance service were shared inside the church by the Christian group while the Muslim Community prayed inside the mosque.
After prayers, both groups lined up outside the mosque and speeches followed. At the end all joined hands and in procession moved from the Mosque precincts to the Church while singing " All we are saying is give peace a chance"
Speakers: David Wakim, Pax Christi and Council of Christians and Muslims (CCM); Wasimah and Nazreen Hanif, Women's Muslim Community; and Mohammad Umar Chand (CCM).
Tena koutou Tena koutou Tena koutou katoa
Asalaam Alayakum, Kia ora and Welcome.
My name is David Wakim and I welcome you here today on behalf of Pax Christi and the Council of Christians and Muslims.
We are here because of the events of 11 September 2001 and the aftermath of those events. We stand together with our Muslim sisters and brothers to show our resistance to intolerance, prejudice and bigotry here in Aotearoa / New Zealand and wherever it is displayed all over the world.
Today we remember those who lost their lives in the U.S. and their families whose grieving will continue on for the rest of their lives.
However we must also today remember those who since that day have lost their lives. Those in Afghanistan, those in Chechnya and Russia, those in Kashmir and India and those in the Middle East, especially Palestine and Israel, wherein lies one of the real causes of hopelessness, misery and resistance that can provide the seeds of terrorism.
It is the causes of terrorism that have really been ignored as we reflect on the past years results of 11 September. Human abuses as displayed by the Israeli military of occupation and on a wider scale by the economic terrorism and the terror of poverty - all issues which need to be addressed as was done at the Earth Summit recently in South Africa. As the rich get richer and the poor get poorer, the scope for desperation increases.
This is not essentially a religious issue but one that has been hijacked by fundamentalists, be they Jewish, Christian or Muslim. We come together today to reinforce the goodness of religion and to reflect on how minorities in the three faiths mentioned have used the label, religion, to promote their own nationalistic and greedy causes.
Please reflect on the injustices against all oppressed peoples because unless justice is addressed, real peace can not follow - for Justice is the seed and Peace is the flower.
Salaam and thank you.