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For peace and justice: BATCA Multifaith Peace Ceremony on 10th October

A call for peace and justice 

Faiths and community came together at the eleventh annual BATCA Peace Prayers at Tooting Broadway on 10th October.  Priests and leaders from four faiths, Buddhist, Christian, Muslim and Sikh, said prayers for peace, while Cllr Piers McAusland, the Mayor of Wandsworth and Simon Hogg, Leader of the opposition on Wandsworth Council spoke in response. Geoff Simmons of the local WW1 history group, Summerstown 182 also spoke, as the public gathered round. Revd  Andrew Davey led the event.

Together the speakers drew on themes ranging from the lessons we learn from Northern Ireland and the First World War to the rich contribution of diversity to local life and the ties that unite us, and Tooting’s special qualities as a place.

Hearts were won by the impassioned speech by the two Head Girls of Al Risalah Muslim Secondary School calling for a better world in the face of the suffering and struggle that surrounds us, and for strong leadership in this.
“Look around you, look at all the faces you see. People of all faiths and colours; each person has a unique story and is on a different path. But however different we may be – what brings us together is our desire to live in a World filled with peace and love.

It is time to stop the hatred, the anger and the fear. We the youth, demand of the adults to be the role models we need, to show us how we can make a better World, a more peaceful and caring World.

We are all very fortunate to live in a city like London – where we are able to celebrate our diversity and live out our shared values. We are different, we are unique, we are many colours – but we are the pieces that make the human jigsaw so beautiful.

We must stand up to those who promote war and division; we must stand up to those who seek to destroy and build walls. But most importantly, we must continue to stand up for justice and peace.

As-Salaam Alaikyum!

May Peace be upon you all.”