Hiroshima Day, 6 August

What words can express the horrors of war?
The atrocity of dropping an atom bomb on Hiroshima?  Nagasaki?
The complicity of citizens?
The heart-wrenching desire to set things more right.
The craving for forgiveness and atonement?

Spirit of Peace, hear our prayer.

‘U.S. airman Matthew McGunigle photographed the Hiroshima blast. After the war, he entered a monastery and took a vow of silence.’   — From the narration of the film The Original Child Bomb.

Spirit of Peace, hear our prayer.

‘More people on the earth were born after the tragic moment in 1945 than were alive at the time of the atomic blast. Yet those who died still cry out to heaven and earth, even to those who do not remember the headlines or the news from that day: Let all the souls here rest in peace, for we shall not repeat the evil.’   —words are inscribed on a stone block at the blast site.

Spirit of Peace, hear our prayer.

On this day of remembrance, we remember the dead, the injured, the scarred, the broken lives. In many places paper lanterns will float on the waters of ponds, lakes and streams, each holding the memory of lives extinguished at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. May the words we choose, carefully reflect our desire to renew our commitment to be peacemakers.

Spirit of Peace, hear our prayer.

Prayer resources on Worship Words:

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, Wikipedia image

From the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Service:

‘Let us unite in prayer for peace, regardless of race or nationality.’

‘At 8:15 a.m., the exact time when the atomic bomb was dropped, the Peace Bell is rung and citizens, either at the ceremony, at home, or at work, offer silent prayers for one minute for the repose of the souls of the atomic bomb victims and for peace.’

‘On August 6th, 1945, an American bomber dropped the world’s first atomic bomb over Hiroshima City. The entire city was devastated by the heat and shock waves of the blast, producing numerous civilian casualties.’

‘The annual Peace Memorial Ceremony is held in front of the Hiroshima Peace City Memorial Monument to appease the souls of those killed by the atomic bomb and to pray for eternal peace on Earth. During this ceremony, the Peace Declaration, appealing for the abolition of nuclear weapons and for the realization of eternal world peace, is delivered by the Mayor of Hiroshima City and is transmitted worldwide.’

Read more on the Hiroshima Peace Memorial website.

Additional prayers and resources for Hiroshima Day observances:

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