Christians are being encouraged to pray and give thanks for the United Nations (UN) and it’s General Secretary Ban Ki-Moon on its 70th anniversary.
The Methodist Central Hall in London is joining the celebrations looking back at 70 years of the global peace body.
Tony Miles, from Methodist Central Hall told Premier the UN is one way the world’s trying to be better: “We need a body that will work for hope, cooperation, security, peace and international development.”
Methodist Central Hall is being bathed in blue light, alongside a number of other buildings, bridges and landmarks across the world.
Mr Miles said Christians need to recognise the good the UN does: “We also need to be praying and actually playing our part in amongst that process to actually try and make things better for the world – and the United Nations is part of our way of doing that – holding onto hope.”
Methodist Central Hall Westminster has a special significance in the history of the UN having hosted the first ever meeting of the United Nations General Assembly in 1946.
Tony Miles said this building brought leaders to “come together and try to rebuild peace after the war, for us it’s very important that it happened here in this building.
“For us it’s really important and we want to be behind it, I think those 51 nations have now become 159 nations.”
Despite its failings Mr Miles says Christians need to stand by its causes: “We have to remember the huge task the United Nations has, and we have to think about what the world would be like without it.
“There needs to be criticism of some of the problems that the United Nations faces, and that sometimes people say that it hasn’t done enough, but without it I think the world would be a very hopeless place.”
Revd Dr Martyn Atkins, Superintendent of Central Hall said: “It was entirely fitting that a body devoted to fostering and facilitating international cooperation should have begun its life in a place dedicated to the service of God.
“Almost 70 years on, we are delighted to join with other buildings across the world to celebrate the vast achievements of the United Nations in such a visible and dramatic way.
“We express our heartfelt thanks to the UN for all that has been achieved and join people throughout the world in prayer for the UN’s current and future work and role.”