Canada 29 July: Toronto, Ontario

Multicultural experiences

The Peace Run Team ran to the Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Centre to start the day.

We participated in a Peace March with representatives of the many different cultures that make up the local community, including people from China, Syria, China, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Columbia and Korea. Shivaram lead the March out of the Centre.

Many people held the Peace Torch and wished the team well.

Children from the Day Camp happily carried our banner.

We were treated to some excellent drumming along the way.

A group photo at the front of the Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Centre at the end of the March.

Jennifer Rajasekhar is the Program Coordinator for the Neighbourhood Centre.

Activities then moved inside. One of the younger residents read us a beautiful poem.

We showed a video of Peace Run activities around the world.

Each runner introduced themselves. Today the team was made up of representatives of the USA (Arpan), Ukraine (Yatkara), Australia (Homagni, Salil and Tavishi), France (Pierre), Slovakia (Kanala), Columbia (Victoria), Iran (Sanaz), Mexico (Olivia), Hungary (Puroga), and Canada (Pushparani).

We presented a Certificate of Appreciation to the Centre.

A print of the artwork titled "Love" was also presented to the Neighbourhood Centre by Shivaram.

Our gratitude to everyone at the Neighbourhood Centre.

Later in the morning, we visited Father Terry Gallagher at the beautiful and peaceful Scarborough Missions Catholic Church.

We explained that the North American Peace Run commenced in New York in April and will complete after four months in New York on August 13. The message of the founder, Sri Chinmoy, is that peace begins in the heart of each one of us and that we can all play a role in bringing more peace into the world by making our own lives more peaceful.

There were beautiful statues and artworks in the church.

An impressive Interfaith Mission Statement, showing love and respect for all religions.

Father Gallagher impressed us by singing the Peace Run and World Harmony Run songs with us.

We sang while walking around the grounds.

Pointing at the current location of the team on our map.

A print of Sri Chinmoy's artwork "Peace Blossoms in the Heart of Goodness" was presented by Shivaram.

Father Gallagher generously invited us to a lunch by Lake Ontario to celebrate 50 years since he was ordained into the Catholic Church.

We enjoyed his enthusiasm and cheerful company very much.

We also made new friends including Mareena, David, Thomas and Charles.

Father Gallagher quickly befriended everyone in the restaurant. A 95 year old lady who frequently dines there was very happy to hear about the Peace Run and wished us all the best. As she left she gave each one of us so much encouragement that we felt that she was a close family member.

Father Gallagher explained the history of the nearby bluffs and sang us a powerful rendition of "Amazing Grace" that we will never forget.

Pushparani, our newest Canadian team member, coming back into the restaurant.

The peaceful and pretty views from nearby Lake Ontario were amazing, as seems to be the case with all of Canadas lakes. We continue to enjoy our time in Canada very much.