Marriage and Family

Conference in Paraguay Emphasizes Strong Marriages and Families

Asunción, Paraguay - Twenty-eight new Ambassadors for Peace were appointed at the International Leadership Conference (ILC) Awards banquet in Asuncion in July 4.

The ILC brought together more than 220 participants from 80 nations, including a significant group of Young Ambassadors for Peace convened by the Youth Federation. In his congratulatory remarks to the conference, UPF Co-chair Hyun Jin Moon spoke of his growing respect for Paraguay and its people. “I congratulate all the Ambassadors for Peace,” he said, “and I want you to know that it was in the Chaco (the remote tropical North) that I first encountered the real spirit of the Paraguayan people."

“Out there in the wilderness I met people who were willing to offer us great hospitality when they had almost nothing,” he said, “and I felt that despite the suffering of this nation in recent years, the time has come for Paraguay to shine. The eyes of the world will be upon this nation.”

Among the Paraguayans spearheading the Global Peace Festival is José Luis Chilavert, a national sports icon who won the “world goalie of the year” award several times for his unique attacking play for the Paraguayan national soccer team. “We’re proud of being Paraguayan,” Chilavert said, “but we’re even prouder that you have come here to our country to kick off the Global Peace Festivals for 2008.” Chilavert was followed by Senator Lillian Samaniego, co-chair of the program.

The International Leadership Conference is designed to introduce the Universal Peace Federation’s Peace Education curriculum, which addresses three key areas: strengthening marriage and the family; interfaith unity and cooperation, and creating a culture of peace -- also a key goal of both the United Nations and UNESCO.

In addition, political, religious and community leaders share insights into potential applications of the UPF Peace Principles in a local context. At a seminar session on the prospects for peace in the Americas, former US Ambassador to Paraguay John F. Keane addressed the need for trust and transparency and said that he hoped Paraguay could set an example for all of Latin America. “Nations do best when they create societies that reward effort and merit over connection and privilege,” Keane said, “and most of all we need to create a culture of mutual trust by working together.”


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