B. Excerpts on History of meditation Room – Wainwright House, Aug 10 1977Filed under Room of Quiet | Significant events & meetings
- Opening – Silent Meditation and Musical Selections by Sri Chinmoy
- Mr. John Ballard , President of the Laymen’s Movement and Wainwright House
- Mr. Francis W. Carpenter, Representative of the Laymen‘s Movement
- Dr. Robert Muller, Deputy Under-Secretary-General
- Dr. Alfred Sunderwirth, Executive Director of the Laymen‘s Movement and Wainwright House
- Mr. Weyman Huckabee
- Mr. Robert McEvoy, City Manager of Rye, NY:
- Note on Wainwright House by Alfred Sunderwirth:
Links to main programme and related photos are also at the bottom of this page/post.
B. Excerpts on History of Meditation Room
Programme at Wainwright House, 10 August 1977
The U.N . Meditation Room: Prayer and Meditation at the United Nations
At an informal gathering at the Wainwright House in Rye, New York, on 10 August 1977, speakers from the United Nations and the Wainwright House honoured Weyman C. Huckabee, the Laymen’s Movement Executive Director from 1941 to 1969, for his part in the creation of the U.N. Meditation Room and in the decision of the U.N. to open and close its General Assembly Meetings by observing a moment of silence. The Programme, to which the members of the United Nations Meditation Group were invited as special guests, recognised the involvement of the Friends of the United Nations Meditation Room and the Laymen ‘s Movement for a Christian World in the efforts to establish the Meditation Room at United Nations Headquarters in New York .
Opening – Silent Meditation and Musical Selections
The program me was opened with silent meditation, followed by musical selections played by Sri Chinmoy on the Indian esrai.
Remarks were then offered by Mr. John Ballard, Mr. Francis W. Carpenter and Dr. Alfred Sunderwirth , all of the Laymen’s Movement, Dr. Robert Muller, Deputy Under Secretary-General for Inter-Agency Affairs and Coordination of the United Nations, Mr. Robert McEvoy, City Manager of Rye, and by Mr. Huckabee. Excerpts from their talks follow.
Mr. John Ballard , President of the Laymen’s Movement and Wainwright House:
When I first became interested in the Laymen’s Movement. I was attracted by the recognition and purpose of trying to connect one’s personal life-inner life, soul life-to the practical affairs with which we work all day long. . . . I was attracted, too, by the international relationship of the Laymen’s Movement, with its support through prayer and meditation of the United Nations. So this is indeed a wonderful occasion on which to honour an organisation that has kept the United Nat ions in its thoughts on a regular basis.
Mr. Francis W. Carpenter, Representative of the Laymen’s Movement :
The Meditation Room is a most imposing sight, as most of you know, because, in addition to the Meditation Room, you have the plaques there showing tribute to people who have given their lives for peace…. Even though we might not die on the battlefield or anywhere else, all of us, in doing what we are doing, are laying down our lives for peace.
Dr. Robert Muller, Deputy Under-Secretary-General
There are many of us in the United Nations for whom the cooperation of all nations around common goals and values is a new form of religion, a supreme path or way. The United Nations is a place of convergence for the dreams and prayers of all peoples for a better world . I cannot help noticing that we see in the U.N. the same perennial human dream which has obsessed all great religions and philosophies, namely, the establishment of a peaceful, happy and brotherly human society on earth.
Dr. Alfred Sunderwirth, Executive Director of the Laymen’s Movement and Wainwright House:
There is one thing that brings all of us to ether here- hope for a better world. We realize that the world on the outside ha s to be shaped by the world on the inside of us. Its formation on the inside of us comes about through our meditation, our sharing and our praying together.
Mr. Weyman Huckabee:
When I was given a private audience to talk with Pope Pius XII about the Meditation Room in the United Nations and about the day of prayer set aside for prayer and meditation for world peace, I asked why there was still so much violence in the world in spite of the efforts made to bring peace. He sa id , “Tha t is a very difficult question .” Then, after a pause he continued , “Because, even though we know the Truth , we do not abide by it. “
Mr. Robert McEvoy, City Manager of Rye, NY:
For the City of Rye I’d like to extend to Mr. Huckabee my sincerest congratulations for your very outstanding work.. . . The International City Management Association has long recognized the value of prayer and meditation . Since 1914 we have practised prayer at our many meetings and in fact initiated all of our meetings with prayer. Our role is to teach our local government officials something about the cosmos, to help us relax through prayer and meditation and to improve our feelings of well-being so that we may in fact improve the quality and the rewards of public service at the local government level.
Note on Wainwright House by Alfred Sunderwirth:
Some have been asking about this magnificent mansion here on Milton Point of Long Island Sound . It was built in 1929 by Colonel Wainwright. During World War I Colonel Wainwright was an aid to General Pershing and was stationed in an old mansion in Amiens, France. He liked it so much that when he came back to the United States he modeled his family home here on Milton Point after that old chateau. It was the home of Colonel Wainwright’s family until 1951 and then given by the daughter, Fonrose Wainwright Condict, to the Laymen’s Movement. It is also known as Wainwright House, Center for the Development of Human Resources.
in PDF format: prog-wainwritght-house-1977-Aug-10-hist-med-room-at-un
Some more photos: (click to enlarge)
See also :
Introduction: UN Meditation – Room of Quiet – Link to History