Peace Through Service PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 27 January 2012 00:00

I like the new Rotary International (RI) Theme “Peace Through Service” for 2012-2013.  In an article written by Megan Ferringer and Arnold R. Grahl  (, RI President-elect Sakuji Tanaka Tanaka explained, “Peace, in all of the ways that we can understand it, is a real goal and a realistic goal for Rotary. Peace is not something that can only be achieved through agreements, by governments, or through heroic struggles. It is something that we can find and that we can achieve, every day and in many simple ways." No definition is right, and no definition is wrong. Peace has different meanings for different people, he added.  

I am sharing this RI theme to encourage not only the Rotarians but also all Mindanawons regardless of religion and cultural differences. We need to consider others and not ourselves only.

Tanaka, a businessman from the greater Tokyo metropolitan area, shared how becoming a Rotarian broadened his understanding of the world. After joining the Rotary Club of Yashio, in 1975, he said, he began to realize that his life's purpose was not to make more money, but to be useful to other people.

"I realized that by helping others, even in the simplest of ways, I could help to build peace," Tanaka said.

He noted that the Japanese tradition of putting the needs of society above the needs of the individual helped his country rebuild after the tsunami and earthquake in March.

"This is a lesson that I think the whole world can learn from, in a positive way. When we see the needs of others as more important than our own needs -- when we focus our energies on a shared goal that is for the good of all -- this changes everything," he said. "It changes our priorities in a completely fundamental way. And it changes how we understand the idea of peace."

Tanaka will ask Rotarians to focus their energy on supporting the three priorities of the RI Strategic Plan , he said. He added that he will ask the incoming leaders to promote three Rotary peace forums, to be held in Hiroshima, Japan; Berlin; and Honolulu, Hawaii, USA.

“In Rotary, our business is not profit. Our business is peace,” he said. “Our reward is not financial, but the happiness and satisfaction of seeing a better, more peaceful world, one that we have achieved through our own efforts.”


My hands off to the president of Rotary Club of Zamboanga City (RCZC), Rikki Lim, for keeping up the expectations of the club when he took over last year from past president Jun Kwan. It is getting better and I believe it is one of the best civic clubs in Zamboanga City. Kudos too to its officers and members for promoting peace through service!


"If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange these apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas." (George Bernard Shaw).

Last Updated on Monday, 30 January 2012 15:27