Peaceful Tomorrows proudly co-sponsored the annual Palo Alto Multifaith Picnic together with American Muslim Voice Foundation again this year. We were lucky to be represented by Gloria Williams who describes the event for us as follows:
This year on September 11th, I was honored to represent Peaceful Tomorrows at the annual event given by The American Muslim Voice Foundation. The theme was “Replacing the culture of despair, division and violence with a culture of hope, inclusion and peace.”
I was warmly welcomed by our hostess, Samina Sundas, and her advisory committee as the late afternoon breeze and soft music greeted the arriving guests. I was immediately struck by the atmosphere of harmony as people arrived.
A lovely vegetarian meal was served to all and then the program began.
After Boy Scout Troop 199 color guard posted the flag, multifaith prayers were led by local clergymen. There was then a moment of silence prefaced by a wonderful salute to September Eleventh Families for Peaceful Tomorrows by Samina Sundas. It was a beautiful moment…
It was so heartwarming to see so many children recite their poems about peace and hope! One song that has always touched my heart was “Imagine” by John Lennon. “Imagine” was performed by two sets of children, it brought tears to my eyes and hope to my heart.
My remarks were well received and at the close of the program there was a candlelight vigil with gathering music that was the perfect finale for this wonderful evening. I was again reminded of a quote by Dr. Martin L. King and it was actually the last thing I asked the crowd to remember at the end of my remarks:
“We are all caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny, whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”
|Gloria addressing the audience during the September 11th Multifaith event.|
|Members of all faiths congregated to celebrate a culture of hope, inclusion and peace.|
In the Media:
Leila Murphy and her sister Jessica Murphy were interviewed about the pretrials in Guantánamo. Leila said: “My hope for a trial would be to hold the perpetrators of 9/11 accountable and also to hold the government accountable, and see that the US upholds the values it claims to stand for.” CLICK HERE to read the entire article.
Ellen Judd, Committee Chair of our Afghanistan Committee, commented on the Taliban-Afghanistan Peace Talks in an interview with the Associated Press. “I think it would be great if the troops were withdrawn,” Ellen said, “While we certainly want that, there is so much more involved in the peace process.” CLICK HERE to read the interview.
In the aftermath of 9/11, Americans often recall the feelings of shared loss and of patriotism that united the country. However, from the attacks also came rationale for endless war, civilian surveillance and Islamophobia. Colleen Kelly, co-founder of September Eleventh Families for Peaceful Tomorrows, joined Rev. Welton Gaddy on “State of Belief” to discuss the organization’s pro-peace activism that defends human rights at home and abroad. CLICK HERE to hear her story.
SOME OF OUR PARTNERS:
October 17: Register HERE to attend an event in New York City about “Building a More Peaceful and Just World” organized by the Institute for the Healing of Memories – North America.
November 2: Peaceful Tomorrow is co-sponsoring an event with The Parents Circle – Families Forum “Opening Minds, One Heart At A Time.” CLICK HERE for all details.
A New Film: “The Report” We highly recommend this film! “The Report” is based on the 2014 Senate Intelligence report on CIA interrogation and detention. It graphically portrays the extent to which the CIA crossed the lines of legality, morality, decency, and honor. The film is fast paced and initially presents a lot of information that may overwhelm an audience unfamiliar with this subject. Peaceful Tomorrow is developing a guide to inform audiences prior to viewing. CLICK HERE for more details.
Billingslea Nomination To State Department Role: Together with other non-governmental organizations, Peaceful Tomorrows signed on to a letter opposing Marshall Billingslea’s nomination. You can view the letter HERE.
Guantanamo Committee: Colleen Kelly spent time in Guantánamo from Sep 8-21. CLICK HERE to read her report about what transpired during the pretrials hearings from Sep 8-10.