The Words of the Murud Family

Norway's Own Peace Festival

Steinar Murud
October 17, 2008

A local Peace Festival took place in Lunde, on the south coast of Norway, on October 18. It was organized by the local UPF, headed by Mrs. Ester Wetzel. A good mix of entertainment and speeches created a stimulating seven-hour program. Pupils from the local school volunteered to help with sound and practical matters, while parents supported them with food and sales of food. An exhibition was organized to offer information about the various organizations that were represented.

The first speaker, from the Baha'i faith, opened with thoughts about this global era. The second speaker introduced her project related to refugees in Norway. In an altruistic spirit, she has been able to help refugees deal with difficulties and traumatic experiences. The International Relief Friendship Foundation described their project of providing resources from Norway to people in need in Estonia.

A presentation on the Falun Gong, as well as a demonstration of its exercises, were given, showing a way to inner peace. An interesting project called Travels for Peace was presented by its founder. This project has sent 150,000 young students on guided trips to Auschwitz, to give them a firsthand experience of what happened on our continent only a few decades ago. The fact that Norway is the country in Europe with the smallest number of young neo-nazis can to a large extent be attributed to this initiative.

The minister from the local church gave a very relevant speech on peace.

In between all the presentations, wonderful music spiced up the program. A Bridge of Peace ceremony helped create friendships between immigrants and Norwegians. Three new Ambassadors for Peace were appointed.

A fireworks show closed an evening that had built many new friendships and given people much inspiration to continue to work for a culture of peace. 

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