4 events: Bad Kissingen, Bad Wildungen, Berlin, Grein
Bad Kissingen, Germany: report by Rita Erhardt
On Sunday the 14th of May, a group of eight people met in Bad Kissingen to celebrate the Symphony of Peace Prayers. After a warm and heartfelt welcome we stayed in silence for a few minutes. Participants were asked to focus their thoughts on peace and all the associations that go together with peace.
During the reading of peace prayers from various faiths and indigenous peoples, we could feel the warm commitment of each reader and some first-time participants were moved to tears. We prayed for peace in every nation and created a mandala with flag cards. After the last card, we formed a circle around the mandala, holding hands. We concentrated on the flag cards and wished all the men and women living in these nations peace in all aspects of their existences.
During the whole ceremony, there was a feeling of clarity, easiness, and cheerfulness, and a strong but gentle focus on peace.
To the Byakko prayer colleagues, my message is: Only through your prayers were we able to create such a strong field of peace here in Bad Kissingen. I can’t express in words how thankful I am. But when I think of all your efforts over all these years, I am moved to tears. Infinite gratitude from the bottom of my heart!
Bad Wildungen, Germany: report by Ingrid Lück
I celebrated the SOPP on my own here in Bad Wildungen. I started by connecting mentally to all the SOPP events being held all across the globe, joining with the wonderful friends praying for world peace. I continued by reciting words of Masahisa Goi and divine affirmations, performing wordless prayers and expressing positive words and gratitude to nature. I then did an extended meditation, during which I prayed for peace in all the different countries. Although I prayed by myself, it felt very powerful being connected to the larger whole.
Berlin, Germany: report by Katharina Knitsch
We had a wonderful SOPP celebration in Berlin on May 14, planting a peace pole at Ufa Fabrik, a local alternative community with lots of good projects. Our celebration also coincided with an event called The Peace Trail, in which people all over Germany and other parts of Europe conducted peace walks during a twenty-day period in May. It was partly for this reason that I decided to make our SOPP gathering a public event this year.
We did some activities inspired by a former Byakko staff member from Japan who has visited here in the past, and we held our first flag ceremony, using big flags, which was lots of fun. We felt really blessed and connected to the worldwide SOPP network!
Grebin, Germany: report by Sylvia Johannsen
Our SOPP gathering in Grebin, northern Germany, was held by three people on the afternoon of May 13th. We prayed for peace in each country and region of the world, forming a mandala of flag cards around a small peace pole. After the ceremony, we watched a beautiful formation of cranes crossing the sky.