SGI in Uruguay and Argentina Hold Commemorative Meetings



commemorative treePlanting a commemorative tree at the SGI-Uruguay Culture Center in Montevideo

On February 18, commemorating the 30th anniversary of the formation of its first chapter in 1984, SGI-Uruguay held an annual general meeting at its Montevideo culture center. Former First Lady of Uruguay Maria de las Mercedes Menafra Rodríguez and SGI President Daisaku Ikeda sent congratulatory messages.

Pablo Álvarez, Director General of the Ministry of Education and Culture, addressed the meeting, stressing the importance of cultivating human to human bonds in the technology age and commending efforts made by SGI-Uruguay members to strengthen friendship in their communities.

At the meeting, the Department of Tacuarembó also presented a commemorative plaque in recognition of Mr. Ikeda’s contributions to peace. SGI General Director Yoshitaka Oba, who was visiting from Japan, received the award on the SGI President’s behalf.

Dr. EsquivelDr. Esquivel (fourth from left), Mrs. Esquivel (second from left), Ms. Álvarez (third from left) with SGI-Argentina members

On February 20, the Soka Gakkai Argentina (SGIAR) Committee of Women for Peace gathered at the SGIAR Peace Auditorium to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the arrival of Nichiren Buddhism in Argentina in 1964. To mark the occasion, the Buenos Aires Provincial Women’s Council announced the awarding of its highest distinction—the “Forjadora de Paz” award—upon Mrs. Ikeda in recognition of her efforts to promote peace alongside Mr. Ikeda for over 50 years.

Nobel Peace Prize laureate Adolfo Pérez Esquivel and his wife Amanda Pérez were among the distinguished guests at the ceremony. Buenos Aires Minister of Government and President of the Buenos Aires Provincial Women’s Council Cristina Álvarez Rodríguez also attended.

related article Lotus Sutra Exhibition Debuts in Malaysia Lotus Sutra Exhibition Debuts in Malaysia On February 16, "The Lotus Sutra – A Message of Peace and Harmonious Coexistence" exhibition created by the SGI-affiliated Institute of Oriental Philosophy (IOP) opened for the first time in Malaysia at Soka Gakkai Malaysia (SGM)'s Wisma Kebudayaan culture center in Kuala Lumpur. In his congratulatory remarks, Dr. Esquivel emphasized that the cornerstone for achieving a lasting peace lies in continually striving to elevate the human spirit. He further stressed that harnessing the power of women is indispensable in creating better communities.

An SGI-Argentina youth culture festival was also held at the Islas Malvinas Stadium in Buenos Aires on February 22. It was broadcast live to 153 venues throughout the nation and seen by some 15,000 people.

[Adapted from articles in the February 21, 24 and March 1, 2014, issues of Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan; photos courtesy of Seikyo Shimbun]

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