Join us this Sunday as we make history with the International Peace Light Sharing. 9:45 am and 1:00 pm in the Gathering area. The Peace Light, symbolic of the Light of Christ especially evident at Christmas, is meant to promote peace, harmony and unity among the people of the world regardless of race, ethnicity or creed. For several decades Boy and Girl Scouts have actively promoted global peace and harmony through the distribution of the Peace Light.
History of Peace Light:
The tradition of the Peace Light began in Austria in the late 1980’s. Each year, a Scout from Upper Austria fetches the light – a live flame from the Grotto of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. The light is then transported to Vienna, Austria under the auspices of the International Scouting Movement. During the weeks before Christmas, Scouts distribute the light to more than 30 European countries, throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico, through the generosity of Austrian Airlines, and the cooperation of the Brooklyn Catholic Committee on Scouting and the Greater New York Council. On November 24th of this year, 12-year-old Tobias Flachner from the “Silent Night” town in Austria was escorted to the Grotto of the Nativity in Bethlehem by a Greek Orthodox priest where they lit the Light of Peace. From there they traveled to Vienna with Austrian Airlines, bringing the symbol of peace to Europe. In past years the Peace Light has been presented to Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI, members of the European parliament in Strasbourg, and the United Nations Troops in Kosovo, and this year on December 13th Tobias will present the light to Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Square in Rome. Austrian Airlines transported the Light of Peace to New York and-to Toronto, arriving at JFK on November 25, 2017. After a sharing ceremony at the airport, the Light immediately started its travels across the United States.
When carrying the Light in the approved container, ensure that the flame is low, there is no spillage of oil remaining on the lamp or container, and that the two sections of the lamp are securely fastened together. Check that the lamp is firmly fitted into the carrying case, and that the lid and flange are securely fastened. The lamp should be on a firm surface except when being carried. When on the move, try and restrict movement. Unsupervised children should NOT be allowed near the lamp or container. The top of the lamp/container will be warm/ hot depending upon the flame. It is advised that the person removing the Light from the container or refilling the lamp wear gloves. The side and base of the container will not be heated, nor will the base of the lamp. When refilling the lamp, it is recommended that the Light is passed on to a candle or night light so that the lamp is extinguished before filling the lamp. Do not overflli the lamp. When passing the flame from one lamp to another, the use of a long wax taper is advised. The top of the lamp should be replaced firmly as soon as practical. For transportation by car: Refueling of lanterns should not occur whilst the car is moving. On a long journey, plan your stops to refuel the lantern. Keep the light away from all fuels and other combustible materials. Keep a window partially open to allow for adequate ventilation.
Read more about the International Peace Light here.