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UN International Day of Families 2014

International Day of Families Observed in Paris

Paris, France - In one of their monthly workshops with Ambassadors for Peace, the French chapters of UPF and the Women's Federation for World Peace (WFWP) celebrated the International Day of Families and the 20th anniversary of the proclamation of the International Year of the Family with a meeting dedicated to family and peace in “La Barouillère,” a public hall in Paris on May 10, 2014. Mrs. Brigitte Wada, president of the WFWP-France, was the moderator.

Under the theme of “The Family – A School of Peace?” the meeting gathered 30 participants including Ambassadors for Peace, UPF and WFWP volunteers, and new guests.

The first presentation was given by Marie Christine Odent, a family counselor, on the theme of “Family as a School of Love.” She emphasized how real a school of love the family was: sharing from her professional experience, she explained how the lives of three generations in the family are shaped by the inheritance of loving emotions as well as painful distortions of love. She then encouraged a discussion, based on a concrete case, about ways to restore a loving relationship when people are burdened with a painful past.

The second presentation was offered by Jacques Marion, newly assigned UPF president in France. On the theme of “Reflections on Family and Peace – Interdependence, Mutual Prosperity and Universally Shared Values,” he spoke about UPF’s concrete vision for a world of peace through the International Highway for Peace and the renewal of the United Nations. Noting that altruism is becoming a matter of discussion among top academics in France, he outlined UPF’s view that the family is the natural framework for nurturing altruism and how family norms should inform a society of peace in its economic, political and religious dimensions.

The meeting ended with informal discussion and a renewed determination to hold monthly meetings that can add stimulating insights onto the cultural scene in this country.

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