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CALENDAR OF EVENTS

November 2017
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IAPP Is Launched in Australia

Sydney, Australia—The International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace (IAPP) was inaugurated in Australia at an event attended by more than 80 dignitaries.

The participants included local Sydney Ambassadors for Peace and more than 20 guests from the states of Victoria, Queensland, and Australian Capital Territory as well as from the Pacific island nations of Vanuatu and Fiji.

The morning session was held at the Oceania Peace Embassy with Jynene Helland of UPF as the emcee. Aboriginal elder Pearl Wymarra gave the welcome-to-country prayer, an Aboriginal tradition. This was followed by welcoming remarks from Rev. Shang Seon Park, the UPF chair of the Oceania region.

Dr. Thomas Walsh, the chair of UPF International, gave an impressive overview of UPF and the worldwide IAPP initiative. Hon. David Clarke, a member of the Legislative Council, the upper house of the New South Wales Parliament, presented a highly inspiring introduction to the work of UPF.

John Bellavance, the vice president of UPF-Australia, spoke on “Values in Leadership,” explaining how IAPP transcends party politics and focuses on “head-wing” thought, which is based on universal moral, ethical and spiritual values.

After a break, the morning session continued with a presentation by UPF-Australia President Greg Stone on “Family Values and World Peace.” He highlighted the profound importance of the family as the essential foundational building block of a peaceful and prosperous society, nation and world.

Anne Bellavance, president of the Australian chapter of Women’s Federation for World Peace (WFWP), an affiliated organization, as well as the vice president for WFWP of Oceania, delivered a message titled “A Conversation about Parity.” Her talk stressed the need to secure equal opportunities for women in all fields and described the critical roles that women need to play if we are to achieve peace.

Mica Camara, the Oceania youth director for Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU), another affiliated organization, gave an overview of the International Association of Youth and Students for Peace, a new initiative established by UPF co-founder Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon.

After lunch at the Peace Embassy, the participants were taken by bus to the Parliament of New South Wales for the afternoon session, where the formal inauguration of the Australian chapter of the IAPP was held in the beautiful Jubilee Room.

The emcee for the afternoon session was Greg Stone. After Rev. Shang Seon Park welcomed everyone, Dr. Thomas Walsh explained in more detail the significance and role of IAPP.

This was followed by a panel discussion chaired by the host of the afternoon session, Hon. David Clarke. Other panelists were Hon. Rachel Carling-Jenkins, a member of the Legislative Council of Victoria state; Rev. Hon Fred Nile and Hon. Lou Amato, both members of the Legislative Council of New South Wales; Hon. Iliesa Delana, the assistant minister for youth and sports of Fiji; and Hon. Andrew Napuat, a member of Vanuatu’s Parliament. A message from Hon. Paul Green, a member of the New South Wales Legislative Council, was read aloud.

The panel discussion was vibrant and inspiring, with many of the participants mentioning God and speaking about the need for strong family values and righteous, moral leadership in Australia and elsewhere. This was followed by a question-and-answer session, in which the audience also offered comments.

Finally, the resolution for the formation of IAPP-Australia was signed by all, and the program concluded with a group photo, afternoon tea and informal discussion.

Everyone seemed to be very inspired by the quality of the speeches and their high moral tone, as well as by the magnificent venue, the oldest parliament building in Australia, which was highly appropriate for the occasion.

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