Our tribute to the illustrious lawyer and extraordinary political leader Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela who on December 5, 2013 returned to the Spiritual World.
The first black president of South Africa, which he governed from 1994 to 1999, fearlessly fought against apartheid, an inhuman regime of racial segregation, which for such a long time made the extreme south of the African continent a wretched place.
On July 18, 2018, Mandela would have completed 100 years. He was a human being worthy of admiration. Nobel Peace Prize winner in 1993, he was decorated in Brazil, to our honor, in 1997, with the Commendation of the Order of Merit of Ecumenical Fraternity, an award given by the LGW’s ParlaMundi in Brasília/DF.
To his esteemed family members and the South African people, our condolences. Madiba, as he was affectionately called, now pursues his activism in the cause of freedom as an Eternal Spirit.
A team of reporters from SBT accompanied a class in the Good Will Educational Complex in São Paulo (Brazil) on the importance of Mandela for democracy and Peace.
Respect for different cultures and the fraternal and ecumenical coexistence that we awake daily in children are shown in these words from student Lara Vitória, 8 years old: “From very little we learn in school that we are all equal and it doesn’t matter if we’re black, white or from other religions. What matters is the Love we have for one another.”
Teaching for Peace
“Education shall promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.” This is an excerpt from Article XXVI of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Closely linked to this precept, in the Lincoln Avenue School, in Orange/New Jersey, a beautiful ceremony occurred at the conclusion of the “Good Will Students for Peace” program, developed by the LGW of the United States in North American schools. Around one thousand students dynamically and enthusiastically took part in the ceremony. The initiative aims at encouraging solidary leadership among students and promoting a violence-free school environment.
Over the last two months, in partnership, LGW's educators and local teachers gave children and teenagers guidance on the theme “caring, sharing, and giving”. The students then decided to put into practice a little of what they learned. With the help of LGW's volunteers they organized a food drive to help families in social vulnerability in Essex County/NJ. This exemplary attitude brought joy to those assisted on November 28, the Thanksgiving Holiday in that country.
The basis of this effort by the educators comes from the stages of the MAPREI (Learning Method through Rational-Emotional-Intuitive Research), which is the methodology used for applying the Pedagogy of Affection (for children up to 10 years old) and the Ecumenical Citizen Pedagogy (for children aged 11 and older), which we work with in the LGW’s schools in Brazil.
In the United States, as in many other countries, the problem of violence in schools is worrying. The LGW’s representative at the United Nations, Danilo Parmegiani, tells me that the Good Will Pedagogy, with its Culture of Peace, has obtained significant results in North America, because everyone notices the benefits of reconciling the formal school curriculum with the experience of Good Will in action.
This news shows us the reach of Ecumenical Spirituality among students. In my book “É Urgente Reeducar!” [It Is Urgent to Re-educate!], I emphasize that it is the cradle of the most generous values that are born of the Soul; the dwelling of the emotions and of the reasoning enlightened by intuition; the atmosphere that embraces everything that transcends the ordinary field of matter and comes from the elevated human sensitivity, such as Truth, Mercy, Morals, Ethics, Honesty, and Brotherly Love.