They are scattered across the city, the Permanent Missions of the member states to the United Nations. I am still learning where they are.
Yesterday when my friend David Bowie and I left the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations we heard the chants of a demonstration. As we made our way up 44th Street toward Grand Central, the sound became louder. At the corner of 2nd Avenue, we saw the people – Syrians.
Men and women, old and young, under flying flags they called for justice and peace for their country.
From their courage and faith, hope leached into my heart as we stood and watched for a few moments. I waved and gave the peace sign as we passed by.
This evening David asked why the group had gathered there. Who did they hope to influence? Groups who come to the UN often do so on 1st Avenue – Ralph Bunche Park is a common location. We wondered if maybe they could not get a permit.
And then I looked up the address for the Permanent Mission of Syria. Sure enough – 820 Second Avenue – between 43rd and 44th – right across the street from where the crowd had gathered to make their witness. The people’s witness touched me; may their witness and the witness of their sisters and brothers in Syria touch their country’s leaders. May peace and justice prevail for Syria and for all peoples.
See you along the Trail.