Munich, Germany—The local branch of UPF marked the 2017 International Day of Peace by organizing an interfaith peace prayer meeting.
A total of 12 persons representing different religious communities accepted the UPF invitation to the September 22 meeting.
In the introduction, the coordinator of UPF-Munich, Robert Bentele, spoke about the United Nations and about the meaning of this UN observance. After that he read excerpts from the 2017 International Day of Peace address of UN Secretary-General António Guterres.
Mr. Bentele especially focused on the motto of the 2017 International Day of Peace: "Together for Peace: Respect, Safety and Dignity for All." Because every human being is, firstly, an expression of God's characteristics, our first duty is to treat everyone in such a worthy way, he said. That would be a base for lasting peace, he said.
The Catholic theologian Gottfried Hutter spoke about the conflict in the Middle East and urged all participating parties—Christians, Jews and Muslims—to admit their respective guilt and to advance the reconciliation process in the spirit of the father of faith, Jacob. He recited the Lord's Prayer, especially emphasizing the plea for forgiveness.
Dr. Alfons Wellenhofer, representing UPF, spoke about the real spiritual power of prayer. It demonstrably can be proved that prayer furthers medical healing processes, he said. Prayer is not for the weak, he said; strong people know about the power of prayer and use it effectively. He then recited the words of UPF founder Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon and presented a Christian-Muslim peace prayer.
Michael Rotter, a peace and nature therapist, accompanied us into the world of Hinduism and presented a peace meditation that crosses the whole world with people praying and meditating at the same time for world peace. He chanted a Hindu prayer and for some minutes guided us in an “Om” meditation.
After a few further contributions, Siegfried Jensen, the Munich pastor of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU), an organization that is affiliated with UPF, reported about his visit to another nearly forgotten hotspot of the world: the border between the Greek and the Turkish parts of Cyprus, where still no lasting peace has been found.
Rev. Jensen referred to the way of peace shown by Rev. Moon: First reconcile with God and focus on Him in order to get the power to create real peace. He concluded the meeting with a profound and vivid prayer.
Every participant lit a candle on the altar after his or her prayer. All the participants expressed support for a worldwide prayer movement for change and peace.