When Mother Teresa was invited to participate in a march against war she responded, “No. But if you have a march for peace, I will be there.” This is how I feel, along with millions of others around the globe. This time of year I wear a poppy for over a month and display a wreath of poppies in my yard, because I remember. And I pray nearly constantly for peace. I meditate on peace. I visualize world peace. I dream about world peace. And I harbour hope for world peace.
I am profoundly thankful for the armed forces who have fought and are fighting for the freedoms I appreciate every day. However I pray for a time when mothers and fathers do not watch their grown children going to war and risking death. To have their children come home, if they are so lucky, often with unfortunate scars running deeper on the inside than the outside. I cry on November 11th during the minute of silence at 11 in the morning, every time, because my heart goes out to every one affected by war. The soldiers and the civilians. The loved ones left behind and the people who are assisted by military there to help. Trying to help in a helpless situation. I cry because war is still happening. Then the minute comes to a close and I open my eyes, wipe my cheeks, and focus on peace. I contemplate how I can add to the energy of peace in the world, how I can encourage acceptance of differences, and how I can epitomize and encourage kindness.
There is so much to be hopeful about. There are so many individuals and organizations doing wonderful work creating a more peaceful world. We can focus more of our attention on raising children into adults who celebrate diversity. We can help foster a sense of a global community by encouraging and supporting organizations such as Playing For Change and CitizenKid.
Check out these titles as a few of the incredible books listed in the bookstore at CitizenKid:
If The World Were A Village: A Book About The World’s People
This Child, Every Child: A Book About The World’s Children
One Hen: How One Small Loan Made A Big Difference
The Good Garden: How One Family Went From Being Hungry To Having Enough
Mimi’s Village: And How Basic Healthcare Transformed It
“We will have peace. We will because we must. We must because we cherish life.” ~ Holly Near