Influential Leaders Ring Peace Bell During the UN General Assembly
FOWPAL emphasizes that taking actions of conscience is the key to global sustainability
The High-Level Week of the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly took place at the UN headquarters in New York on September 19-23, bringing together heads of state, foreign ministers, and other leaders from more than 150 nations, the largest gathering of its kind since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Our world is in peril and paralyzed,” warned UN Secretary-General António Guterres at the opening of the UN General Assembly. On September 23, the Federation of World Peace and Love (FOWPAL), Permanent Mission of Kiribati to the UN, International Federation for Peace and Sustainable Development, African Women Working Group at the UN, Marmara Group Foundation, Foundation for a Drug-Free World Americas Chapter, and COJEP International co-organized the World Leader Summit of Love and Peace and the ceremony of ringing the Bell of World Peace and Love, where President of Kiribati Taneti Maamau delivered a speech, and 13 leaders in various fields rang the Bell of World Peace and Love, making wishes for peace and providing recommendations on the promotion of peace. Over 100 people from 27 nations attended the event.
Echoing the theme of this year's UN General Assembly "A watershed moment: transformative solutions to interlocking challenges,” the theme of the summit was “Taking Actions of Conscience: The Key to Solidarity and Transformation for Sustainability.” Through cultural exchange, bell ringing ceremonies, and dialogue among leaders, the summit consolidated the participants’ goodwill, inspiring people to act with their conscience to improve the well-being of global citizens.
Dr. Hong, Tao-Tze, president of FOWPAL, delivered welcome remarks, emphasizing that only by taking concrete actions of conscience to support reconstruction and recovery can humanity prevent or mitigate future crises and benefit the Earth and all humanity. He stated, “Conscience is the foundation of human beings and the cornerstone of global stability and sustainability. Conscience guides us to tell true from false, right from wrong, and good from bad, as well as helps us establish priorities. Persistence brings strength. We need to strive for a better tomorrow. That is the way forward and will lead to a hopeful future.”
President of Kiribati Taneti Maamau and Teburoro Tito, former president of Kiribati and current ambassador of Kiribati to the UN, both attended the Summit. Ambassador Tito expressed his gratitude to FOWPAL for working closely with his Mission to the UN over the years.
President Maamau rang the Bell of World Peace and Love in 2016 and delivered a keynote speech at FOWPAL's World Leader Summit of Love and Peace in 2017. Beginning in 2018, FOWPAL collaborated with the Permanent Missions to the United Nations of Kiribati, Bahrain, Equatorial Guinea, and other countries on a draft resolution titled "Promoting the Culture of Peace with Love and Conscience." On July 25, 2019, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the draft resolution submitted by the Kingdom of Bahrain, declaring April 5 as the International Day of Conscience. In recognition of President Maamau's promotion of world peace, Dr. Hong presented FOWPAL Lifetime Achievement Award to him at the 2022 Summit.
President Maamau delivered a keynote speech in the Summit, emphasizing, “While we are proud to learn that the promotion of International Day of Conscience is sustaining momentum around the world, let us also ponder on how we can inspire a sustainable world built on conscience. It is imperative to ask this question: How are we willing to apply our conscience to promote a culture of peace and global prosperity?”
Thirteen leaders rang the Bell of World Peace and Love, including Fatima Maada Bio, First Lady of Sierra Leone; Victoria Irabor, president of Defense and Police Officers Wives Association, Nigeria; Dr. Ada Okika, UN Coordinator, Africana Women Working Group at the UN; Dr. Monica Sanchez, culture ambassador and founder of Miss Caricom International Foundation; Dr. Denis Atchade Assongba, president of the Beninese Alliance of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut; Ralph Kader, head of Information Technology at United Nations; Dr. Agorom Dike, president and founder of the Caribbean and African Faith-Based Leadership Conference; Johnny Ford, founder and president of the World Conference of Mayors and Historic Black Towns and Settlements Alliance; Anthony Miranda, New York City Sheriff; Dr. Binod Verma, former president of New York State Academy of General Dentistry; Dr. Charles Olawole, president of the Pan African Unity Summit Group; Mr. Bobby Zorro Hunter, founder and executive director of Empowerment; and John German, main international representative to the United Nations, Centre for International Peacebuilding.
Fatima Maada Bio, First Lady of Sierra Leone, wished for a more just and united world where everyone lives in peace. New York City Sheriff Anthony Miranda wished for safety, good health, and peace for everyone. Dr. Monica Sanchez stated, "I hope that all people can learn to respect and love each other so we can create a peaceful world." Johnny Ford said, "To let peace and love ring around the world so that we will have no more war . . . A world of peace and love forever." Raugh Kader stated, "I wish peace will prevail over the world with peace and love."
Dr. Hong, Tao-Tze, president of FOWPAL, presented to the bell ringers meaningful gifts, including a Compass Clock of Conscience and The History of International Day of Conscience. The clock represents time, direction, and goal, guiding people toward the right path of life and reminding them to seize every moment to apply conscience and do good deeds. The History of International Day of Conscience documents the crucial cooperation among FOWPAL and the Permanent Missions of various nations to the UN, which made the United Nations’ designation of April 5 as the International Day of Conscience possible.
In the capacity of the president of the World Conference of Mayors, Johnny Ford proclaimed the evening of September 23, 2022 as Dr. Hong, Tao-Tze night. On behalf of the mayor of New York, Johnny Ford, president of the World Conference of Mayors, and Mr. Bobby Zorro Hunter jointly presented a citation from New York City Mayor Eric Adams to honor Dr. Hong for promoting the UN goals.
The citation states, “Today's summit serves as a reminder for us all to work towards a better tomorrow, and it also provides an opportunity to commend FOWPAL's president, Dr. Tao-Tze Hong for his commitment to uphold the values of peace and love shared by people in the five boroughs and far beyond. I look forward to the many years Dr. Hong and every gathered will continue to foster positive change as we unite to #GetStuffDone and rebuild, renew, and reinvent our global city. Now therefore, I, Eric Adams, Mayor of the City of New York, on Friday, September 23rd, 2022, do hereby confer this citation on: Dr. Tao-Tze Hong.”
The Foundation for a Drug-Free World Americas Chapter and COJEP International presented the Global Humanitarian Leadership Award to Dr. Hong in recognition of his advocacy of love and peace around the world.
FOWPAL has self-funded its trips to 101 nations to promote a culture of peace with love and conscience. Through cultural performances, summits, bell ringing ceremonies, as well as endorsement campaigns for various declarations, FOWPAL has planted the seeds of love, peace, and conscience in countless people, awakening people’s conscience, inspiring them to think good thoughts and do good deeds to create a peaceful world where people live in peace and happiness. To date, 445 influential leaders from 128 countries, including 49 heads of state and government, seven Nobel Peace Prize laureates, UN ambassadors, and other visionaries, have rung the bell and made their wishes for peace. Through the solemn and sacred bell ringing ceremonies, the bell ringers spread their sincere wishes for peace. The consolidated positive energy has served as a powerful driving force for the collective actions of bell ringers and global citizens to foster world peace.
To encourage organizations and individuals that are dedicated to the promotion of world peace, Dr. Hong presented certificates to the co-organizers of the event and leaders in various fields, including Ambassador of Kiribati to the UN Teburoro Tito, President of the International Federation for Peace and Sustainable Development Sally Kader, President of the Global Security Institute Jonathan Granoff, Marmara Group Foundation, African Women Working Group at the UN, First Lady of Sierra Leone Fatima Maada Bio, President of Defense and Police Officers Wives Association Victoria Irabor, Foundation for a Drug-Free World Americas Chapter, COJEP International, Reverend Dr. Agorom Dike, and President of the World Conference of Mayors and Historic Black Towns and Settlements Alliance Johnny Ford for their contributions to education, culture, sustainability, world peace, or spirituality.
The summit also featured a multicultural feast. FOWPAL members presented martial arts performances, dances and singing to convey their kind wishes for everyone. Through an elegant Celestial Peacock Dance, FOWPAL encouraged people to spread positivity and make the world a better place as according to legend, the celestial peacock digests poisons and exhales fragrance. Through an elegant Royal Fan Dance, which culminates with a heart-shaped formation, symbolizes that the heart is the root of everything and that conscience is the key to solidarity and transformation for sustainability. Their demonstration of martial arts embodied the purpose of martial arts, which is to prevent war and advance morality. FOWPAL also presented two songs “A Prayer for Peace” and “We Can Change the World” to pray for the world.
FOWPAL encourages everyone to take action to support love, peace, and conscience. To date, the Declarations for Human Rights of World Citizens and Peace (http://www.taijimen.org/lectur...)have been endorsed by over 3.7 million people in 200 nations, and the Declaration for the Movement of An Era of Conscience and the Declaration of International Day of Conscience (http://www.aneoc.org/endorse-2...) have been endorsed by over 340,000 people in 200 nations. FOWPAL hopes that everyone will act with conscience so that the world will be peaceful, and that everyone will be joyful so that every family will be happy.