Date: Thu, 25 Oct 2012 17:05:03 -0400
From: UNNews



New York, Oct 25 2012 5:05PM 

United Nations Headquarters in New York sang and danced to the music of award-winning artist and humanitarian Stevie Wonder and other renowned musicians on Thursday evening, during a concert to celebrate the world body’s 67th anniversary.
Mr. Wonder, who is also a UN Messenger of Peace, performed his well-known ‘Happy Birthday’ song, as well as some of his best known hits, to a General Assembly Hall full of enthusiastic UN staff, members of the diplomatic community and guests, in observance of UN Day, observed annually on 24 October. The date marks the anniversary of the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945.

Everybody knows about the famous Seven Wonders of the World. But we know there is an eighth wonder – Stevie Wonder!” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in his remarks at the concert last night.

“His songs fill us with optimism and hope. His sound carries our spirits to new heights. And his voice expresses caring, happiness and love. We are all inspired by Stevie Wonder’s amazing music. But for the United Nations and people around the world, he is even more than an artistic legend. He is a towering humanitarian,”Mr. Ban said.

Mr. Wonder has advocated for the work of the United Nations since 2009, when he was appointed a UN Messengers of Peace, with particular focus on championing people with disabilities.

UN Messengers of Peace – who are widely recognized for their talents in the arts, academia, literature, sports and entertainment – help raise worldwide awareness of UN ideals and activities. Through their public appearances, contacts with the international media and humanitarian work, they aim to expand public understanding of how the

UN helps to improve the lives of people around the world.

The other performers at the 2012 United Nations Day Concert – entitled ‘A Message of Peace, featuring United Nations Messenger of Peace Stevie Wonder’ and which took place at the UN General Assembly Hall – included Janelle Monae, Sting and Valerie Simpson, amongst others.

The 90-minute concert was streamed live by the UN website, allowing people all over the globe to join in the celebration of the world body’s work in the areas of humanitarian assistance, gender equality, human rights, peacekeeping, and economic and sustainable development, among others.

“Tonight [Mr. Wonder] gives us the gift of an unforgettable concert in celebration of our UN – the UN that stops wars and promotes peace, the UN that stands up for human rights and works to bring down poverty, hunger, disease and suffering,” Mr. Ban said in his remarks.
Tonight, we are ready to sing, dance and clap our hands. And tomorrow, we continue to forge a better world for people everywhere, and for our future as a human family,” he added.

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  1. Living with a person who speaks English as a second language I am intimately aware of communications issues that can arise in a simple conversation. Yet there [at the United Nations working and social environments] where people speak several languages and may often use a third language to communicate with each other, I can only imagine and would really prefer not to, difficulties that can arise even with a simple greeting and asking how someone’s day is going. “I asked how your day was going, No, oh gosh no, I didn’t say you would need to go, I wouldn’t do that, honest!” That is probably how MY day would start, I’m honestly laughing out loud here picturing my infamous Mr. Murphy riding shot gun on my shoulders, in all his glory like a cute tiny little Gremlin. I would step through the door, and it would be like he’s just finished a 12 course meal at the stroke of mid-night. He’d turn into one of those awful mean little creatures wreaking havoc and staying out of sight so I get the blame. Reminds me of the time I was in sixth grade and my parents found Pot in the glove-compartment of my sisters car. She told them it was mine, and THEY BELIEVED HER!! I got grounded for two weeks. I was in 6th grade, I didn’t even smoke yet! Such is life eh.

    Such is life – I think that’s the point I’m getting to here, if you wouldn’t mind reading a little bit farther.

    In editing this post, not the words mind you, I just try to add some references, and explain the acronyms maybe add a picture or two. These are the little things that always help me remember the details of a story. I enjoy doing it because I keep up on all the news. Of course I read all of these as I work on them. I usually look for the one substantial quote or information in these brief’s to highlight. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is a very gifted speaker and although I’ve never seen him speak in person, I have seen him on video’s and You-Tube of course. Oh, and the United Nations has a Streaming TV Channel now. It’s very nice.I put a link at the end of this message. Secretary General Ban’s words are always very eloquent, clear, concise and he has a way of moving a person to want to be more, to be better as a human being. At least that’s what his words do to me.

    I am sometimes struck speechless as I read the words of all of these world leaders, and know that I am reading words that will go forward in time. Perhaps one day being a mantra of hope for those whose needs exceed their capacity of understanding. Tonight as I read the Secretary General’s words I am struck by their simplicity and grace. Yet here is a perfect example of a common phrase made uncommon, by a yet more uncommon man.

    I will put these in my quote book and hope someday to see these words written in places of honor. Over the door or on a stair or plaque going into the UN. But my hope would be to see this uncommon phrase made common, by instilling it our children, in our parks where our children play, in our schools and coffee shops, maybe in the window of a store as we pass by on our way somewhere which we’re late getting to.

    To see these words written as a reminder to us all and spreading hope where they are read:

    “Tonight, we are ready to sing, dance and clap our hands. And tomorrow, we continue to forge a better world for people everywhere, and for our future as a human family,” ~ United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon 25th day of October, 2012.

    It’s always the simple things that make like better! Thank you Mr. Secretary-General. I now have a new goal. To make these words known to all of our kind.

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