Prayers for peace in Hiroshima
A-bomb anniversary solemnly remembered
August 8, 2012
On Sunday, around 500 people carrying placards and banners reading “World Peace” and “End Nuclear Power” marched up the main street from Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park to the cathedral.
That evening, a Mass to petition for peace was held at the cathedral. Archbishop Pier Luigi Celata, Secretary Emeritus of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, was in Japan this week and attended the Mass.
Related activities were also conducted throughout the day. A symposium on the prospect of ending nuclear power generation was held on Sunday afternoon, echoing the central theme of a message issued last November by the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Japan.
The program also featured comments from a Korean resident of Japan who survived the bomb and from mothers who had been forced to flee Fukushima in the wake of last year’s nuclear accident.
On Monday, around 400 people attended a “Mass of Memorial for the Victims of Nuclear Weapons and Wars Everywhere,” also held at the cathedral with Bishop Man’yo Maeda of Hiroshima as the main celebrant.
At 8:15 a.m., the time the bomb was dropped, a minute’s silence was observed.
In his homily at the Monday Mass, Bishop Sueo Hamaguchi of Oita said that the events of last year, including the nuclear incident at Fukushima Dai’ichi, illustrated “the errors of this world,” including human pride.
We must turn toward the source of salvation and share the journey of those in the midst of hardship, he said.
Hiroshima diocese’s peace activities will end tomorrow, with another Mass at the World Peace Memorial Cathedral dedicated to the victims of the nuclear bombing of Nagasaki.
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