Pax Christi commemorates Hiroshima and Nagasaki

 Pax Christi members in the UK and elsewhere will be involved in vigils, times of prayer and reflection to mark the 60th anniversary of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Pax Christi International will be represented at commemorative events in Japan at the same time, offering messages from Pax Christi sections around the world. Pax Christi's main focus in the UK will be the vigils it will hold in the Piazza of Westminster Cathedral, London on 6 and 9 August. On 6 August a special open-air liturgy will be held at 2.45pm and on 9 August prayers will be shared at 11am and 3pm. Pax Christi have also organised a week-long peace exhibition in a side-chapel of the Cathedral. Pat Gaffney, General Secretary of Pax Christi said: " we remember these anniversaries to help us commit ourselves to ridding the world of nuclear weapons. Sixty years on, nuclear weapons are still a reality. Eight countries possess them, the US, Russia, UK, France, China, Israel, India and Pakistan. Despite obligations in international law to get rid of them, no progress has been made to eliminate nuclear weapons." The British section of Pax Christi has sent a message to Hiroshima. They say: "With the recent failure of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty it us up to the ordinary people of the world to remind political leaders of the horrors of nuclear war. We have a particular responsibility with our own Government here in the UK, which holds on to nuclear weapons as a deterrent and which is planning to upgrade the Trident nuclear programme in the years ahead. Be assured that we wish to work with all people of good will to remind the world that nuclear weapons are a crime against God and humanity. When our voices join together they become strong - speaking truth to power in the effort to transform acts of war and violence to acts of peace and justice." Events organised by Pax Christi members: 6 August Milton Keynes Peace Pagoda, 8pm, Hiroshima Day Lantern Floating Stratford -on-Avon, street display for Hiroshima. Contact Tom Baxter, 01789 204283 Cambridge: silent vigil outside Guild Hall, City Centre. Contact Stewart Hemsley 01223 315585 Coventry Cathedral, Chapel of Unity, 6pm. Service of music, poetry, readings and silence. Contact Ann Farr 02476 679398 Swinton, Salford 12.00 noon - 2pm A commemoration in poetry, song and speech. Contact Basil Landau 0161 737 2388 6 - 9 August " Liverpool - a continuous presence of people fasting at Peace Garden. Contact Merseyside CND 0151 708 7764 " Newcastle upon Tyne, outside St Thomas the Martyr, opposite Haymarket Metro. 2.30 - 4pm each day. Contact Christian Wickens 0191 281 4168 9 August Aylesford Priory, Kent. 8.20 pm Nagasaki day remembrance. Contact Phil Kerton 01474 873802 For more information contact Pax Christi on 0208 203 4884 and visit ICN's Listings page.

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