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2007 International Day of Peace
and International Day of Prayer for Peace
in Aotearoa New Zealand
"On this International Day, let us promise to make peace not just a priority, but a passion. Let us pledge to do more, wherever we are in whatever way we can, to make every day a day of peace." - from the UN Secretary General's message for the International Day of Peace 2007
About the International Day of Peace About the International Day of Prayer for Peace
Listings of related events Photos: Wellington Auckland
If you would like your event or photos included, please send to Peace Movement Aotearoa. If you would like a printable formatted version of this page with the web and email addresses visible, please ask here.
About the International Day of Peace
Observance of the Day began in 1982, following the 1981 UN General Assembly Resolution (A/RES/36/67) which reaffirmed that "since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defence of peace must be constructed" and declared the third Tuesday of September, the opening day of the regular session of the General Assembly each year, "shall be officially dedicated and observed as the International Day of Peace and shall be devoted to commemorating and strengthening the ideals of peace both within and among all nations and peoples".
In 2001, a further General Assembly Resolution (A/RES/55/2820) proclaimed that from 2002, the Day would in future be observed on 21 September each year; and in addition to the original purpose, declared that henceforth the International Day of Peace would also "be observed as a day of global ceasefire and non-violence, an invitation to all nations and people to honour a cessation of hostilities for the duration of the Day".
The International Day of Peace is marked each year at the UN Headquarters in New York by a ceremony near the Peace Bell. At 10am (local time, 2pm GMT, 2am on 22 September here), the UN Secretary-General delivers a message for peace, then rings the bell and calls on people throughout the world to reflect for a moment on the universal goal of peace. Following a moment of silence, the President of the Security Council makes a statement on behalf of Council members.
Peace and community groups around the world mark the Day in a number of different ways - more information about the Day, and what is happening around the world, is available on the International Day of Peace site, information particularly useful for students is on the UN CyberSchoolBus site, and the UN Department of Information fact sheet about the Day is available here.
If you're interested in finding out about the "millions of Scouts working for peace by taking action within their communities", that information is available here.
Information about the International Day of Prayer for Peace
The International Day of Prayer for Peace is also observed on 21 September. It is organised by the World Council of Churches (WCC) as part of their 'Decade to Overcome Violence: Churches Seeking Reconciliation and Peace' initiative. It began in 2004 following a meeting between the WCC General Secretary Rev Dr Samuel Kobia and the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, and is "an opportunity for church communities in all places to pray and act together to nurture lasting peace in the hearts of people, their families, communities and societies."
Information about the International Day of Prayer for Peace 2007 is available here with resources for the Day available here.
International Day of Peace events, from 20 to 26 September
- Friday 21 September - 'Flowers on the Ocean of Peace' Ceremony, to mark the UN International Day of Peace, 4pm at the northern end of Orewa beach where the Nukumea Stream meets the sea. Organised by the United Nations Association of New Zealand (Rodney District Branch), for more information contact email. There is a printable poster for this event available here.
- Sunday, 23 September - UN International Day of Peace event celebrating the declaration of Auckland Peace City and the 20th Anniversary of New Zealand Nuclear Free Zone, Disarmament and Arms Control Act (1987). With speakers including the Mayor of Auckland Dick Hubbard, UNANZ National President Antony Vallyon, Auckland Interfaith Council President Mike Roberts, Soka Gakkai International Director Jimi Wallace and Auckland youth; interfaith choirs and other musical performance from the community of faiths, plus a brass band; and the NZ launching of the Soka Gakkai International exhibition 'Creating a Culture of Peace: The Right to Human Security'. Starts 3pm, at St Matthew-in-the-City, corner of Hobson and Wellesley Streets, location map here. Organised by the United Nations Association of NZ (Northern Region) with the Auckland Interfaith Council and Soka Gakkai International, for more information contact email. There is a printable poster for this event available here.
- Wednesday, 26 September - UN International Day of Peace event including promotional and educational stalls from peace-related groups, a peace wall with statements about peace and on which people can post their own peace statements, distribution of flowers for peace, and the opportunity for people to make a peace pledge. From 12 noon to 1pm, Atrium, WA Building fourth floor, City Campus, Auckland University of Technology (AUT), location map here. Organised by the AUT in partnership in the Auckland Zen Centre, for more information contact email or email.
Raumati, Kapiti Coast
- Friday, 21 September - Gathering at the peace sculpture to link with the international peace vigil, 12 noon at the peace scuplture, Queens Park; the church bells of most Wanganui churches will also be ringing at noon time. Organised by Operation Peace Through Unity, for more information contact email.
- Friday, 21 September - International Day of Peace celebration: on this day, five years ago, the peace sculpture 'Handspan' was dedicated to a culture of peace and non-violence for the children of the world, and - whatever the weather - our celebrations will include a short ceremony at the sculpture and the release of dove balloons. As in previous years the names of the 192 United Nations member nations will be mentioned and included in our thoughts; and some other celebrative contributions are being planned. From 5pm to 7pm, at the Sarjeant Gallery, Queens Park. Organised by Operation Peace Through Unity and the United Nations Association of NZ (Wanganui Branch), for more information contact email. There is a printable poster for this event available here.
- Friday, 21 September - Peace vigil with local groups from different faith traditions, music, readings, lighting candles and silent meditation to observe the UN Day of Peace. From 4pm to 8pm, at the Kapiti Uniting Parish, 27 Raumati Road, Raumati; for more information contact email.
- Friday, 21 September - Celebrating the UN Day of Peace with a quiet ceremony for local, national and international peace; 10am to 10.45am, at Te Puna Wai Ora, the spring of life, corner Jackson and Buick Streets, Petone. Organised by the Petone Peace Group, for more information contact email.
- Thursday, 20 September - Peace vigil celebrating the International Day of Peace, from 5pm to 6pm at the Cenotaph, corner Lambton Quay and Bowen Street; one in the series of peace vigils which are held on the first and third Thursday of each month. For more information contact Peace Movement Aotearoa, email. There is a printable poster for this event available here.
- Friday, 21 September - International Day of Peace event, with a display of Peace Pin-wheels, and Peace Day brochures; starts 12 noon, at St Andrew's on The Terrace, 30 The Terrace. Organised by the St Andrew's Social Justice Group, for more information contact email.
- Friday, 21 September - 'Disarmament: Where to from here', an International Day of Peace event with guest speaker Marian Hobbs, MP and former Minister for Disarmament; from 12.30pm to 2pm, Meeting Room One, Student Union Building, Victoria University of Wellington. Supported by the Peace Foundation Wellington Office, for more information contact email.
- Friday, 21 September 2007 - 'Light up the Avon with a thousand candles' International Day of Peace event which includes the planting of a camphor tree gifted by the city of Nagasaki, ringing of the World Peace Bell, declaration of the city becoming a Rotary City for Peace, bestowing a Peace Award, launching a peace walk, and floating 1000 candles in Avon River. From 5.45 pm to 7.15pm, in the Botanic Gardens at the site of the World Peace Bell (near Riccarton Avenue); hosted by Deputy Mayor Carole Evans, for more information go to this web page or contact email.
- Friday, 21 September - Prayers for Peace, starts at 12.15pm at the lake front. Organised by the Wanaka Interfaith Peace Cell whose members are Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, Hindu and Buddhist, people working in the area of spiritual healing, and those seeking spiritual wisdom and peace; for more information contact email.
- Friday 21 September - International Day of Peace celebration at the Peace Pole, to promote cross-cultural communication and understanding. The programme includes a karakia, a welcome by Grant Hubbard, CEO of Foundation Studies Ltd, a short address by the University of Otago Chaplain, Greg Hughson, and messages of peace from international students from the University of Otago Language Centre and other English language schools; starts 12 noon, at the Peace Pole, Museum Reserve. Organised by the University of Otago Language Centre and Foundation Year, for more information go to this web page (scan down the page) or contact email or email.
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