MAC supported and joined in the World Day of Prayer for Peace virtual interfaith service hosted by Interfaith Paths to Peace, the Drepung Gomang Center for Engaging Compassion (DGCEC), and St. William Church on New Years Day 2022.
The service was hosted by Anne Walter of DGCEC who welcomed everyone. “I’m honored to greet you and start our new year, 2022. One of the great blessings is to be able to see so many of you from all over, even from other countries. This is a new chance to commit to compassion and nonviolence.”
Before each prayer, Anne rang a singing bowl. She introduced the person giving prayer, a short prayer was given, and then 90 seconds of silence were taken so all in attendance could sit with that wisdom.
Mark Hacker and family of the Lakota Native American tradition began the proceedings with a prayer of centering. The Temple Rabbi Gaylia R. Rooks then gave a Jewish Prayer and Song for Peace. Dr. Jahangir Cyrus of the Baha’I faith gave a reading of peace. Ravi Dhareshwar of the Hindu Temple of Kentucky spoke next, speaking a mantra which meditated on the glory of the creator.
Dr. Waqar Saleem spoke next, representing Muslim Americans for Compassion and thanking Anne and the other sponsors for a wonderful event.
“It’s an honor to be here,” he said. “Islam is a religion of Peace, and we Muslims greet each other by saying ‘As-salamu alaykum’ which means Peace Upon You. I’d like to focus this prayer on the power of healing from the Creator.”
Dr. Saleem gave the Islamic Prayer for Peace, and the full text is available at the end of this post. At his prayer’s conclusion, he gave words from the Koran: “When God command and wills a thing, is to say to it, ‘happen,’ and it comes to be. I pray that God will make it happen; so that all of us are healed. May this year bring peace to all. Amen.”
The interfaith service continued with a Christian Prayer for Peace from Stachelle Bussey of Interfaith Paths to Peace and The Hope Buss, then a Tibetan Buddhist Chant for World Peace. Then it concluded with an offering of Prayers for Peace, Hope and Need, a pledge of nonviolence, a hopeful rendition of John Lennon’s Imagine by songwriter John Gage, and a Sending Blessing by Joe Grant of Holy Hills Hermitage.
This was a beautiful service, combining numerous faiths and calling for a better new day and new tomorrow. Thank you to all who took part and thank you for shining your light upon the world.
Islamic Prayer for Peace
Shared by Dr. Waqar Saleem
January 1, 2022
بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ
In the name of God, the Gracious, the Merciful.
Thank you Anne Walter for hosting and Drepung Gomang Center for Engaging Compassion, St. William Church & Interfaith Paths to Peace for arranging 24th Annual World Day of Prayer for Peace Interfaith Service.
My name is Waqar Saleem, Vice President of Muslim American for Compassion (MAC) and it’s an honor to be here.
Islam is a religion of peace. Muslims greet each other by saying ٱلسَّلَامُ عَلَيْكُمْ As-salamu alaykum, which means peace upon you. I want to say to each one of you and to all the humanity, peace upon you.
Considering the last two years, I like to focus this prayer on power of healing from the Creator.
Oh God, heal us from the state of apathy, and make us more empathetic towards each other, to the sick, poor, helpless, to the one who are suffering.
Oh God, heal us from excessive materialistic desires and make us content with what we have while counting our blessings and embracing the virtues of spiritual & moral wealth.
Oh God, heal us from divisions which plague our politics, religion, and society and make us united; like one big family with love for all.
Oh God, heal us from shackles of bigotry, misogyny, racism, oppression and make us an inclusive society with social justice for all.
Oh God, help us heal, as so many of us have suffered during this pandemic; and while helping with physical ailments, heal our hearts and purify our spirits too.
Oh God, heal the mother earth and make us better stewards of climate. And open our hearts to help fellow citizens suffering from natural calamities; like one’s in Western Kentucky.
I will end this prayer with verse from Quran, chapter 36 Ya-Seen, verse 82:
إِنَّمَا أَمْرُهُ إِذَا أَرَادَ شَيْئًا أَنْ يَقُولَ لَهُ كُنْ فَيَكُونُ
When God command and wills a thing, is to say to it, “happen,” and it comes to be.
I pray that God will make it happen; so that all of us are healed.
May this year bring peace to all. Amen.