ASC invites community to "Ring the Bells" for peace

(12-04-2008)

Adams State College invites San Luis Valley community members to join in "ringing the bells of peace" on the Richardson Hall lawn at noon on Sunday, Dec. 21. This is international effort to promote peace during this holiday season that was initiated by singer Melissa Etheridge and Pakistani rock musician Salman Ahmad. Ahmad is also a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador and an international AIDS activist.

"Our bell will join with many," said Adams State President, Dr. David Svaldi. "If you cannot attend in person, please join in spirit from wherever you may be."

Participants are asked to bring a bell to ring, if possible. Light refreshments will be served. The catalyst for Adams State's participation is Masood Ahmad, Director of Student Engagement and Success (no relation to the musician). Campus Minister Shirley Atencio is coordinating the local event and asking churches to participate. Adams State was one of the first on a growing list of colleges to commit to participation. Other colleges and universities participating across the nation may include Harvard, Princeton, Univ. of Southern California, Smith, Kansas University, Pittsburgh State, Boston University, Cornell, and UCLA.

This simple effort to promote peace began when Etheridge and Ahmad met at the Nobel Peace prize concert in November 2007, held in Oslo, Norway. Hoping to create something that could bridge east and west and perhaps bring some light to the world, they created a song called Ring the Bells. Deepak Chopra and his Alliance For a New Humanity have taken the song as a call to action.

Melissa Etheridge says about this endeavor: "There's no expectation, just an invitation. The change is here. It is time to acknowledge all our differences, accept them with peace and move forward in unity. We can do this. Imagine every heart touched by the sound."

By Julie Waechter