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The sculpture Non-Violence has not only endowed the United Nations with a
cherished work of art; it has enriched the consciousness of humanity with a
powerful symbol that encapsulates, in a few simple curves, the greatest prayer
of manthat which asks not for victory, but for peace.
- former UN Secretary-General and Nobel Peace Laureate Kofi Annan

Dear Friends,
The United Nations is charged with global peacekeeping and peace
building efforts, and the artwork on the grounds and within the
complex reflects the spirit of that immense undertaking.
In our third joint peace blog in honor of the International Day of
Peace, Loretto at the UN and the Loretto Peace Committee examine a
few pieces that symbolize the ideals of nonviolence and disarmament
in a world in which killing and destruction are too often the go-to
solutions for governments and individuals dealing with political,
cultural or personal conflict.

Pope John Paul II presented The Dove of Peace to the United Nations
during his visit to New York in October 1979. The mosaic is a copy of one
that was created in the Constantinian Basilica during the pontificate of Pope
Innocent III (1198-1216). The enamels were made in 1727, and the gilt
bronze frame was made in 1796. (United Nations Photo/Lois Conner)

The bronze statue, "Let Us Beat Swords into Plowshares" was a 1959 gift
from the then Soviet Union. Made by Evgeniy Vuchetich, the image
represents the figure of a man holding a hammer in one hand. In the other
he wields a sword that he is making into a plowshare, symbolizing
humanity's desire to put an end to war and convert weapons into peaceful

tools that benefit all people. The title of the piece echoes a phrase from
Isaiah 2:3: And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many
people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears
into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall
they learn war any more. (United Nations Photo)
Sculptor Carl Fredrik Reuterswrd created the famous bronze sculpture
Non-Violence, also known at The Knotted Gun (pictured at top of page), to
honor singer-songwriter John Lennon and his vision of a more peaceful
world. Initially placed at the Strawberry Fields memorial in Central Park
across from the singers former home, the piece was relocated to the plaza
at the entrance to the UN in 1988, a gift from the government of
Luxembourg. The Knotted Gun has become a global icon of non-violence,
with replicas located in the Olympic Museum in Lausanne, at the waterfront
in Cape Town and in the Peace Park in Beijing, China. (Photo by

The United Nations Association of Japan donated the Japanese Peace Bell to the
UN in 1954. The bell was cast from coins collected from 60 different countries and
resides in a structure made from cypress wood, reminiscent of a Japanese Shinto
shrine. The bell is rung twice a yearon the first day of spring and on the
International Day of Peace on September 21. These words are inscribed on the bell
in Japanese: Long Live Absolute World Peace. (United Nations Photo)

The International Day of Peace is this Saturday, September 21. You

might choose to gather around a Peace Pole or under a colorful
cascade of origami Peace Cranes. Or maybe youll light a candle or
meditate in contemplative silence.
But whether you find yourself in solitude or in community, please set
aside the time to pray for peaceful resolutions to unrest, between
nations and within each of us.
Sally Dunne

Copyright 2013 Loretto Community, All rights reserved.

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