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November 2019
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Peace Education

Reflections on World Summit 2013

St. Vincent and the Grenadines - Profound gratitude is extended to the UPF local Representative Rev. Kay Bacchus Browne. Her commitment and tenacity toward peace, security, human rights, and religions unification within the nation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG), must here be unequivocally highlighted. She worked tirelessly and sacrificially to ensure that St. Vincent and the Grenadines was well represented at the World Summit. Hence, she left no stone unturned in her quest to see that there was religious, political, and civic representation from SVG at the World Summit in Seoul, South Korea 2013.

Special thanks are also extended to Rev. Dawn Bacchus Horan for her inspirational teachings and loving support to Chebar Evangelical Assembly Inc. Her inspiration enthused the Assembly to encourage its Overseer (Rev. Lemmew Samuel) to participate in the 2013 World Summit in Seoul South Korea.

A word of appreciation is in the highest order to the UPF for hosting this timely World Summit at a time when many people/nations around the world are desperately seeking for (personal and collective) peace, security and economic development.

A group of four Vincentians – (namely Mrs. Jennifer Eustace, Rev. Dawn Bacchus Horan, Rev. Kay Bacchus Browne, and Rev. Lemmew Samuel) arrived in Seoul, South Korea on February 21. After preliminaries, the team was ready for the summit. The theme for the summit was “Peace, Security and Economic Development” discussed over a three-day period. The three days of presentation and discussions featured a cadre of speakers from various regions of the world who touched on a wide range of issues pertaining to Peace, Security, and Development. Some of the salient areas touched on in the summit included family life, environmental threats, gender inequality, distribution of wealth (physical and natural resources), religious segregation, civil wars, political and religious leadership, freedom of movement, freedom of speech, trade within and among regional and international partners, nuclear weapons in the regions (among neighbors) – India and Pakistan, North and South Koreas, Iran and Israel.

It was strongly emphasized that peace, security, and development has its bedrock in the strength of the family. Families, including neighbors, need to recapture those core principles of caring and sharing with each other, thereby allowing communication to take place, which should inevitably lead to meaningful change.

However, although each presentation and debate must be applauded, enough was not said or done to emphasize the religious component of the theme. There was too much focus on political and economic development.

Furthermore, the Caribbean was not featured as part of the special speakers presented within the keynote addresses (speeches). This may be seen as an oversight by the planners of the summit. As a matter of fact, the Caribbean which represents a jewel of peace in the world was only mentioned once in a passing comment with reference to CARICOM as a potential trading partner with Canada and its allies.

APPLICABLE LESSONS:

  1. Begin the communication/dialogue process with those who are ready and open. Start with your organization using the things that are common and can be agreed upon with those who are willing to dialogue.
  2. Strongly emphasize the role the family plays within the organization/nation.
  3. “Justice” must be a principal element to achieving peace in any given situation.

SUGGESTIONS:

  1. The Summit be held every two years.
  2. The Summit be more balanced with a strong religious component to its program.
  3. Time should be allotted for recreational tour and community participation.
  4. The summit be held within five days rather than three days.

[For a report about the Summit click here.]

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