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 One Family Pins Peace Project

When in the course of human events……

September 11th, a 911 call, a human event, occurred, I, like every being in the world was in shock and pain.  Throughout the ensuing days I found myself mesmerized with watching the events on television.  Along with family and friends we held prayer groups, lit candles and made donations.  For me, it did not seem enough. 

I decided to create the “We Are All One Family Button”, which I call the Human Flag.  In the midst of the chaos of that day, we forgot race, color, and creed.  Our Human Family was hurting and all that was important, all that mattered was to help them.  It was our brothers, sisters, parents, children, friends, and associates, creating a human chain of a helping hand.

My feelings that  “We are all One Family” were the impetus that created the button.  I knew that separation is caused only through fear and an 'eye for an eye' was not the answer to dispel that fear.

           The buttons were sold with a sticker on the back, and those who bought them wrote a message of understanding, hope, peace, and love on it for me to take to Ground Zero.  I visited New York the last week in November, 2001, to hand out the buttons to the volunteer station at St. Paul’s Church, Firemen, Policemen, and people who were visiting that site.  The enormity of it was quite humbling and was held in reverence by all.  Tears were shed, hugs were given and we were all ONE FAMILY.  I know that as I looked into the eyes and faces of the volunteers behind the fences, tired, worn and yet not defeated, doing their humongous jobs, knowing that somehow they were making a difference, filled me with humbling gratefulness.

        The Sacredness of Humanity that day will forever more be the view I look at everyone with.  The quiet humbleness of the hundreds of people milling about, catching our eyes, sharing a smile, a tear, a sigh or a kind word was indwelled in my memory forever.  I brought home with me the knowing the strength we as humans have, how in the face of all that occurred, we still kept on.  I left there with the certainty of hope for us.

Thinking that was the end of the button story, I returned home only to receive a call and an email from Sr. Grace who ran the volunteer program at St. Paul’s Church, thanking me for the pins and would I send more, she stated she wore hers every day.  So through the generosity of friends who volunteered to purchase more pins I was able to send off 1,000 more to Sr. Grace.  The pins have their own life now, as I have been receiving emails from firemen, policeman, and volunteers, etc., expressing their gratitude for the pins sharing with me that everyone at Ground Zero was wearing one of the pins.

            With that thought in mind, I decided to then send some pins  to The Pentagon Volunteers.  My friend who accompanied me to New York, LiAnne Selzer, had a relative who was stationed at The Pentagon and so she emailed him and he sent me phone numbers.  Within two calls I contacted the gentleman in charge of the renovation site.  I shared the story with him and asked if it would be possible for me to send some pins for the volunteers, and he was truly eager and said yes immediately.  So on May 2nd they were presented to The Pentagon. 

That is also a story*(see Peace Project Buttons).  I wanted the first batch to be presented in person at The Pentagon but was unable at this time to get there.  My daughter Gail was visiting and suggested since she lived 2 hours outside of DC that she would take them.  So Gail, her husband Scott and their 8 yr old son Chandler were the ones delivering them in person.  Chandler was very thrilled at his secret mission from his grandmother.  He had his mother go to an Army/Navy store to purchase some fatigues for him to wear.  When my daughter inquired about The Protocol for taking pictures she was told it was ok and that they may even take a picture of my grandson and put it on the Pentagon’s website.  Chandler’s school is so excited about the pins and Gail is ordering more to share with them.

When in the course of human events…

The story continues...

A friend and I gave out 110 pins to a charter school in Phoenix.   The pins were given to children who achieved the DOVE program, which stands for, “Developing Our Virtues Everyday.”  Also, a group of International Women bought 50 buttons to send to an orphanage in Jerusalem and others are going to Uganda and parts of Africa. 

In reverential humbleness I realized that it only takes one thought followed through to completion to truly make change.  The pins aren’t about me Shirley; they are an entity on their own.  They are about holding peace, love and compassion for all the peoples of the world, in whatever they face, in their pain, loss, confusion, and fear.  It is saying to a sister or brother, We Care.  We only need to open ourselves to understanding the absolute connection of ourselves to the universal oneness.  Could this ONENESS CONNECTION, possibly be what God, Creator, Great Spirit, Allah in whatever name you pray to and worship, could it be what Buddha, Ghandi, Christ, knew and wanted to share with us?  Is Humanity The Holy Grail?  In our search for divinity, Are we, each sacred being IT?  Did they, the Avatars, know that as a collective we could do more to further this belief?  For me I say YES! for I truly know that at the source, at our roots, in our beginnings, “We Are All One Family.”            

In the course of our lives we are presented with many experiences both personally and collectively.  Oftentimes we allow ourselves to fall victim to these events and feel immobilized, unable to recover and give up our faith and hope in what one might call “the system.”  I ask, “Who is the system?  Are we not the voters; are we not the citizens of this country?  Is it not up to each one of us to make a difference in whatever way we can?  Is it easier for us to blame the system, our boss, our spouse, our parents, our children, and etc., for every wrong we perceive?  Do we forget to count our blessings each day?  Do we forget to believe in something greater than us?  Before presenting this in the article, I needed to ask myself these questions, I needed to dig deep within to truly understand the concept of Oneness. I feel for myself, for that is all I can speak for, as a part of this magnificent universe we reside in, that standing up for what I believe, to make a difference in however small or large way I am called upon or I am able to, is a way to be accountable and responsible for myself and my beliefs.  Won’t you join me in a One Family Gathering, wherever you are and do one thing that sponsors peace.  

P    Prayerful
   E    Equality

        A    Allows
            C    Conscious
                 E    Evolution



Shirley Catanzaro

Pentagon Project    One Family   Silence The Drum of War 

Ground Zero  Lianne Selzer  African Button Story  

Peace Begins Within     Prayer for Peace    I AM



Shirley Catanzaro - delphian.7gen@cox.net