6 events: Bracciano; Luino, Lake Como, Milan, Matera, and Ragusa
Bracciano, Italy: report by Guru Inder Kaur
In Bracciano, near Rome, friends of the Yoga Dharma Community gathered to celebrate the Symphony of Peace Prayers. Together, we offered prayers for peace in each country of the world and for harmony among all religions and peoples. We arranged our flags at the center of the space, around a large image of the earth with the prayer May Peace Prevail on Earth (in Italian). We felt great joy and a sense of oneness with everyone celebrating around the world.
Luino, Lake Como, and Milan, Italy: report by Martina Simagaia
On the occasion of May 15, there were three SOPP events held in northern Italy.
In Luino, on Lake Maggiore, on the morning of May 15, Gian Franco and I held a simple ceremony for peace in our garden. Our friend Giorgia joined us at the end, while another friend, Daniela, prayed in connection with us.
At lunchtime, we all joined Luca, Simona, and Luca’s father, Luigi, at Lake Como. There, in a splendid location in the woods, near mountains and a river, Daniela shared various writings on the sacred feminine, and we held a peace ceremony in front of a small chapel dedicated to Our Lady.
Then, at 4 pm at the Yogabile center in Milan, Laura Ricchina and her husband, Gian Piero Carezzato, began a ceremony that involved people from different associations and spiritual paths, and who together created an SOPP gathering. Members of the local Bruno Groening Circle of Friends group were participants in this event. Donatella Tordoni from the Bruno Groening Circle offered this message regarding the divine feminine: “In the male-female duality, human beings received the precious gift to experience and express those special divine qualities, so peculiar and unique in each aspect, so that we could grow spiritually in them and through them. Each is vital to the other for complete wholeness. In the recognition and perfect integration of the divine masculine and divine feminine lie the harmony and the understanding of the divine essence. The time is ripe for men and women, as divine beings, to mutually honor this gift in service to one another and to the world.”
At all of these events, participants prayed for peace in all nations, placing a heart on the flag of each country, and the word ‘love’ was spoken after the name of each country. The combination of these three elements—the flags of the nations, the hearts, and the word ‘love’—contributed a spirit of love, light, and reaching out to the whole planet, in tune with the theme of this year’s SOPP, the Soul of WoMen campaign.
Symbolically, water appeared in our events several times, through the presence of Lake Maggiore, Lake Lugano and Lake Como, and the waters of the Torrente di Livo! Infinite gratitude to water! Thanks again to everyone for this wonderful experience of unity!
Matera, Italy: report by Maria Caterina Putignano
It was wonderful to celebrate the SOPP in Matera, in Italy’s deep south, which was named to be the European Capital of Culture in 2019! We spent many months preparing for this ceremony, with help from the peace group in Potenza, especially Vito Palladino. We contacted several local cultural associations, as well as local schools, to involve them in the ceremony. Our long period of preparation really put us in the mindset of peace.
Our event took place on the 14th of May. Inside the historic Palazzo Lanfranchi, we held a conference with various cultural representatives. Women spoke about their vision of peace. Representatives from the schools and the Catholic Church spoke about peace education. Afterwards, some 60 secondary school children joined our flag ceremony, carrying the flags of all the countries of the world. We held the ceremony on the little square outside the Palazzo Lanfranchi, and the public was able to see and appreciate this special event.
Ragusa, Italy: report by Sasha and Renato
At the Maunacenter in Ragusa, together with people around the world, we lived the energy of the divine feminine—an energy that can change and renew the world. With meditations and prayers, we felt the oneness of all humanity, in infinite harmony. A local Buddhist peace center and various other groups from Sicily joined in our event. May the feminine energy within our hearts renew and heal the earth!