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Peace Bell Ceremony

As you may know, toward the end of World War II, the United States was regularly bombing Japanese cities.

Gifu was bombed on July 9 and again on July 12, 1945.

It's estimated that those two raids destroyed 70% of the city, killed or injured over 2000 people and left as many as 100,000 homeless.

In 1988, the same year that Gifu and Cincinnati became sister cities, Gifu declared itself The Peace City. Since then, Gifu has worked on projects to promote peace throughout the world.

The Peace Bell Project is one of these efforts. Gifu holds an annual Peace Bell event to commemorate the tragedy of the war. This year marks the 26th anniversary of this event.

Every year on July 9, Gifu's citizens gather to tell their children about the experience of the bombing and to pledge their dedication to peace.

Every year on July 9, temple bells all over Gifu ring to express their hopes for peace.

And every year on July 9, in Cincinnati, Gifu's sister city, we join Gifu in praying for peace everywhere, and we ring our own Peace Bell to mark the occasion.

We're privileged to be able to hold our Peace Bell Ceremony at the Peace Bell Center in Newport, Kentucky, just across the Ohio River from Cincinnati where one of the largest bells in the world is housed.

A video of the Peace Bell ringing, 9 July, 2015 (13.5 megabytes)

Another video from 9 July, 2015 (6 megabytes)

In 2016, we will hold the Peace Bell Ceremony on July 24 in honor of Gifu Mayor Shigemitsu Hosoe's visit to Cincinnati. Please join us to meet Mayor Hosoe and pray for peace.