Ringing of the International Peace Bell in Northern Kentucky
The “2015 Peace Bell Event” took place at the World Peace Bell Center in Northern Kentucky on July 9 to pray for world peace and strengthen the bond with, Gifu, Japan, which has been Cincinnati’s sister city since 1988.
This event is held annually on July 9, which is the date that bombs were dropped by the American airplanes to the center of Gifu city in 1945 during WWII. Every year on July 9, both Gifu city and Cincinnati ring this bell and pray for decreased violence and permanent peace with the echo of the peace bell on the other side of the globe.
Around twenty people attended from several fields related with Japanese associations or educational institutions in this area to celebrate this memorial event. The bamboo tree decorated with the many pieces of paper written with wishes for peace, was displayed in the hall. This is the Japanese traditional custom called Tanabata. After the speech about world peace and the history of this project, the peace bell, which is the world’s largest free swinging bell, was rung and echoed all over the Cincinnati area across the Ohio River. The powerful, peaceful and deep resonant tone of the magnificent bell has continued to deliver the peaceful sound to people’s mind in the area.
It has been 70 years since the end of World War II this year. For these 70 years, the world has been confronting and struggling with the issue of worldwide conflicts. However, we tend to forget the significance of peace because of our busy lives. 70 years after the tragedy of the war, the echo of the peace bell rung on the opposite side of the globe giving us the chance to reconsider the idea of global peace.