PEOPLE WITH A
PASSION FOR PEACE
Since 1995, the all-volunteer and interfaith peaceCENTER continues to be a significant community catalyst for peace in San Antonio, Texas. Compassion and Justice are our strong guiding lights. Contemplative Practices, Experiential Education, and Nonviolent Actions are our working expressions throughout the community at large.
285 Oblate Drive
San Antonio, Texas 78216
The peaceCENTER is a 501(c)((3)) non-profit
You can donate to the peaceCENTER via PayPal!
Join us for the Blessing of the Peacemakers and the appointment of the 2018 San Antonio Peace Laureates. Sunday, January 28, 2018, 3-5PM at the Whitley Center. Free and open to the public.
The drinking fountain and clock tower in the market square of Stratford-Upon-Avon was the gift of Philadelphia Ledger publisher, antiquarian and philanthropist George Childs, donated for the Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria. It was unveiled in 1887 by the actor Henry Irving and was also intended to be a tribute to Shakespeare and to Anglo-American friendship. It earns it’s status as a peace monument with the inclusion of this quotation from Henry VIII (Act V, scene 5) spoken in the play by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Cranmer, at the christening of Elizabeth: In her days every man shall eat in safety \ Under his own vine what he plants, and sing \ The merry song of peace to all his neighbours. \ God shall be truely known, and those about her \ From her shall read the perfect ways of honour \ And by those claim their greatness not by blood. The verse, of course, echoes Micah 4:4: Everyone will sit under their own vine and under their own fig tree, and no one will make them afraid. The clock still works but the drinking fountain is dry. Flowers are planted in what were once horse troughs.
January 14, 1875
“Constant kindness can accomplish much. As the sun makes ice melt, kindness causes misunderstanding, mistrust, and hostility to evaporate.”
January 17, 1942
“Rivers, ponds, lakes and streams – they all have different names, but they all contain water. Just as religions do – they all contain truths.”
January 19, 1969
“Pretend that this is a time of miracles and we believe in them.”
The sister city relationship between Arlington, Texas and Bad Königshofen in Bavaria began when a German official on an exchange program stopped in Arlington and related how hard things were in his city. Not only were they suffering from post-war shortages, but their location on the border created an influx of refugees from the East which also strained their resources. The Texans quickly gathered supplies and had them shipped to their new German friends. Over the ensuing 50 years the relationship grew. In 2003 Arlington installed this 12-foot stainless steel pillar, etched with words in both German and English that reflect the depth of the relationship. It was designed by a team of Texan and German artists and stands in a small park at the city’s art museum, across the street from city hall. A polished stone slab is engraved: International Peace and Friendship Monument | Dedicated July 12, 2003 | In honor of over 50 years of friendship between Arlington and Bad Koenigshoefen.
January 10, 1834
“Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
January 10, 1864
George Washington Carver
“How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of the weak and strong. Because someday in your life you will have been all of these.”
January 11, 1885
“When you put your hand to the plow, you can’t put it down until you get to the end of the row.”
Hyde Park was the home of Franklin Roosevelt. Outside the Presidential Library, in the Freedom Plaza, is BreakFree, constructed of pieces of the Berlin Wall (which fell in November, 1989.) It was installed in 1994. The sculpture is by Edwina Sandys, granddaughter of Winston Churchill. The sculpture shows the figures of a man and a woman emerging from symbolic, giant barbed wire, expressing Man’s irresistible quest for freedom. It stands on a podium inscribed around the base with Roosevelt’s ‘Four Freedoms’ as articulated in his 6 January, 1941 State of the Union Address: freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want and freedom from fear. Sandys carefully saved the cutout pieces from a 1990 art installation, “BreakThrough,” at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri (video below.) It was here in 1946 that Churchill gave his famous “Sinews of Peace” speech in which he claimed that “an iron curtain has descended across the Continent.” Out of range in this photo, in front of “BreatFree,” is a bronze bust of FDR, installed in 1945 and a facing bronze bust of Churchill, installed in 2007 at the urging of Sandys.
1 Gantan-sai (New Years) – Shinto
2-4 Mahayana New Year – Buddhist
5 Twelfth Night – Christian
5 Guru Gobindh Singh birthday – Sikh
6 Epiphany – Christian
6 Dia de los Reyes (Three Kings Day) – Christian
13 Maghi – Sikh
18-25 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity – Christian
19 Timkat – Ethiopian Orthodox Christian
21 World Religion Day – Baha’i
22 Vasant Panchami – Hindu
31 Tu B’Shvat – Jewish
December 31, 1908
“For evil to flourish, it only requires good men to do nothing.”
January 3, 1892
“It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations, if you live near him.”
January 5, 1932
“Fear prophets and those prepared to die for the truth, for as a rule they make many others die with them, often before them, at times instead of them.”
The Christmas Truce Memorial was dedicated by The Duke of Cambridge Prince Harry on December 12, 2014, the 100th anniversary of an informal truce between British and German troops in the trenches of France during World War I, in which they sang carols, exchanged gifts and even kicked around a soccer ball. It is located in the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire, a site that contains more than 330 memorials, many of them to military organizations but also dedicated to organizations and individuals. The statue was designed by a 10-year-old schoolboy in a competition that involved more than 30,000 schools.
December 24, 1745
“Controversy is only dreaded by the advocates of error.”
December 24, 1754
“A great lie is like a great fish on dry land; it may fret and fling and make a frightful bother, but it cannot hurt you. You have only to keep still, and it will die of itself.”
December 24, 1922
“Rich people march on Washington every day.”
This Tribute to Human Rights, by Mariano González Beltrán, was dedicated on December 15, 2004 and is located in the Plaza de Santo Domingo. Composed of numerous figures cast in bronze and arranged in a circle, it represents “a society that lives in harmony, in harmony with the enjoyment and respect for human rights, which develop throughout life”, according to the artist. The circle is an allusion to the cycle of life, from the gestation of the human being (represented by a pregnant woman) to the twilight of his days (an elderly couple). In addition, it also encourages thinking about the continuity and, at the same time, the universality represented by the Council of Europe’s work in favor of human rights. It can even be compared to the circle of stars that make up the flag of the Council of Europe. Embossed text inserted in the work itself says: “To all citizens who strive for the exaltation and defense of HUMAN RIGHTS and in the exercise of democracy and justice, tolerance and freedom of expression.” A replica of this work is found in Strasbourg, in gardens in front of the Palace of Human Rights. It was a donation in 2007 from the Government of Murcia.
December 17, 1936
“Human rights are not only violated by terrorism, repression or assassination, but also by unfair economic structures that creates huge inequalities.”
December 18, 1927
“A great many people in this country are worried about law-and-order. And a great many people are worried about justice. But one thing is certain; you cannot have either until you have both.”
December 21, 1892
“Did St. Francis preach to the birds? Whatever for? If he really liked birds he would have done better to preach to the cats.”
On December 10, 1948 the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted by the United Nations, which held its fifth General Assembly at the Palais de Chaillot, in Paris. In 1985, at the entrance of the forecourt, an engraved slab was dedicated and the esplanade was re-named as the “Court of Human Rights.” Dedicated by Prime Minister Mitterand, it says: “men are born and remain free and equal in rights,” quoting Article 1 of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen of 1789.
On October 17, 1987, at the initiative of Father Joseph Wresinski, a second slab was sealed at the other end of the square. It reads as follows: “On 17 October 1987, human rights defenders and citizens of all countries gathered in this square. They paid tribute to the victims of hunger, ignorance and violence. They affirmed their belief that misery is not fatal. They proclaimed their solidarity with those who are fighting around the world to destroy it. Where men are condemned to live in misery, human rights are violated. Uniting to enforce them is a sacred duty.” The dedication of this slab is where the World Day of the Rejection of Poverty was launched, celebrated each year on October 17, and officially recognized by the United Nations General Assembly as the International Day for the elimination of poverty.