The Peace Light from Bethlehem has arrived in Kahoka.
Each year, a child from Upper Austria fetches the light from the Eternal Flame from the Nativity Grotto in Bethlehem where Jesus was born. These oil lamps have reportedly burned for more than 1,000 years.
The light is then flown to Austria from where it is distributed at a Service of Dedication to delegations from across Europe who take it back, with a message of Peace, to their own countries for use at ecumenical services throughout the Continent.
The Peace Light arrived in New York on November 28, and has made its way across the nation again.
On Wednesday, December 16, Pastor Dixie Laube of St. Paul United Church of Christ, accompanied by Kristi Webber, travelled to Urbandale, Iowa to bring the light to Kahoka.
“I learned about it from the Conference Office, and found out they have been bringing it to Iowa since 2010, so it’s been in Iowa for five years,” Laube said.
“When I saw it this year, I thought, with everything going on in our world, with terrorism attacks and ISIS, and going into an election year, that having the Peace Light here might help us center ourselves. It can remind us theat we’re not alone in this world and that Light is a part of us.”
St. Paul will spread the Peace Light in it’s Christmas Eve service, lighting the Advent candles from the Peace Light, and eventually, light all the candles from its flame.
Laube invites other area churches to contact her at St. Paul to arrange a time to receive the Peace Light for their congregations.
“This small light gives hope, that even though there is much darkness and violence in our world today, we can still see signs of loving and peaceful community. We can still see people living together in harmony, and working together for peace and justice. We receive this light as a visible reminder of the mission we share,” Laube explained to the St. Paul Congregation on Sunday morning.