Peace Light

Will you be a Messenger of Peace this Christmas season?

During these contentious times, what will you and your unit do to be a Messenger of Peace in your community? Have you discovered a meaningful way to teach good citizenship during the holiday season? Have you ever considered having your pack or troop or crew designated a Messenger of Peace unit?  One meaningful way to do this is to help share “the light” of Bethlehem here in Iowa.  For almost ten years, the Mid Iowa Council have joined scouts and scouters from throughout the United States and Europe in sharing the Peace Light from the Grotto of the Nativity in Bethlehem.

Each November a young person from Austria travels to Bethlehem and lights two lanterns from the eternal flame that has burned for over a thousand years in the place where it is believed Jesus was born.  It is returned to Vienna where scouts from many countries light their lanterns and disperse the light throughout Europe and Eastern Asia.  At the same time the head of security for Austrian Airlines personally carries the flame to Kennedy Airport in New York where this year it arrived on Saturday November 25. Following a brief arrival ceremony, scouts and scouters set off to disperse “the light” throughout North America.  This year “the light” arrived in Iowa on Tuesday, November 28.

 “The Light” will burn brightly Monday through Friday, December 4 through December 22 at the Maytag Scout Center where you can transfer the flame to a lantern or long burning devotional candle from 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM. In past years, units have distributed “the light” to sponsoring churches, nursing homes, jails and prisons, various civic locations and numerous other locations.

Become an individual Messenger of Peace or help your unit receive the Messenger of Peace designation by sharing “the light” during this Christmas season in your own special way. You are limited only by your imagination. Come, receive the “Light of Peace” to brighten your Advent and Christmas season.

For information about designating your units a Messenger of Peace go to https://www.scouting.org/messengersofpeace.aspx

For more information about the International Peace Light Program go to www.peacelight.org or email Alan.strohmaier@gmail.com

Scouts and Scouters met the Peace Light upon its arrival at Kennedy Airport in New York on Saturday November 25 before heading on their way to disperse “the light” throughout North America. The two men in suits near the back are head of security for Austrian Airlines who flew “the light” to New York.