World Interfaith Harmony Week Activities 2015

26 February 2015, 11:00 PM
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A World Interfaith Harmony Week celebration in West India, 2015

World Interfaith Harmony Week is observed the first week of every February, as adopted by the United Nations in 2010. It includes those of all faiths and those with no faith, and encourages people of every group to recognize their common values, build ties with each other, and work alongside one another to bring peace and harmony to their communities. 

Please enjoy reading the following reports, sent in by URI Cooperation Circles around the world, of celebrations for World Interfaith Harmony Week 2015. 

Congratulations to URI Pakistan affiliate the Universal Interfaith Peace Mission for winning the first place prize for World Interfaith Harmony Week 2015! From the WIHW website announcement: "Universal Interfaith Peace Mission (President- Dr Allama G R Chishti) of Pakistan for their various events in a range of locations including 1. Islamia University of Bahawalpur 2. Roz TV Pakistan, 3. Jame Masjid New Sohan Islamabad, 4. Divine Light Public School Islamabad. There was excellence in scope and reach." Read more.

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The opening session of the United Nations World Interfaith Harmony Week event

United Nations Headquarters, New York

Interfaith Harmony Week: Multi-religious Partnership for Sustainable Development 

The World Interfaith Harmony Week event at the UN was organized by the President of the United Nations General Assembly, H. E. Mr. Sam Khamba Kutesa and the Committee of the Religious NGOs. URI UN Representative Rabbi Roger Ross spoke on the panel addressing Interfaith Collaboration for Post 2015 Sustainable Development Agenda. Special thanks to the URI CCs who sent photos from their Interfaith Harmony Week events that became part of a short video that was shown during this event.

Read the full report about this event or view the UN webcast.

Submitted by: Monica Willard, United Religions Initiative, UN Representative

 

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Host Cooperation Circles: Multiple

Location: Al Mallka Aliya, Amman, Jordan

 

In celebrating the World Interfaith Harmony Week 2014, the URI office organized an “Interfaith Harmony Walk" at Al Hussein Sport City's pine forest. During the walk, the participants gathered in a circle and prayed for the soul of the brave Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kasaesbeh (murdered by Isis militants). Some participants reflected on this tragic action by highlighting the fact that it does not represent Islam. Then the participants shared prayers for peace from different religious traditions.

 

Afterwards, the URI regional coordinator conducted an exercise that shows how the followers of all religious traditions get closer to each other while they are striving to achieve their ultimate goal, which is to get closer to their creator. Hence, it would be easier if mankind cooperated to achieve this goal instead of competing with each other.

 

In honor of World Interfaith Harmony Week, King Abdullah's office in Jordan produced a World Interfaith Harmony Anthem about loving our neighbors.

 

Submitted by Mamoun Khreisat, Regional Coordinator, URI Middle East and North Africa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Host Cooperation Circles: DMLBonn & URI Germany

Location: Bonn, Germany

DMLBonn CC and URI Germany CC (URI Deutschland CC) were co-organisers together with the Baha'i community of an interfaith film evening honoring World Interfaith Harmony Week.

About 25 participants participated. To start the evening we enjoyed a wonderful meal with delicious food from a buffet, prepared by the beloved women of our core team of organisers. Afterwards we watched the film "URI Interfaith Symphony" about an amazing evening of interfaith music, and testimonies with about 1.200 participants, which URI Europe and BZN organised in Antwerp in 2007 in connection with a Global Council meeting there.

After watching this film, we had a circle of conversation and exchanged our impressions and reflections. People expressed being touched and moved by the unity and harmony manifested in the "Interfaith Symphony". Many said that it was a very inspiring evening, motivating them to continue and strengthen their efforts for unity in diversity.

Submitted by Karimah Stauch, Regional Coordinator, URI Europe

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Host Cooperation Circle: Youth for Peace

 

Location: Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

We gathered on the hill above capital city Sarajevo, called Yellow Fortress. Yellow Fortress is actually a remnant of the defensive fort built under the Ottomans. Remembering the victims from the Siege (1992-1995), from the youngest to the oldest, we lighted a candle to light their path on their journey to a better world.

It may be strange, but we found similarities with our gathering and the weather in Sarajevo. Sarajevo is known for its days full of fog. The relationship among this country’s different religions also has too much fog (politically economically and socially), which contributes to bad relationships among people. There should be more candles (in the form of sharing positive experiences and stories) to move that fog from people's eyes.

Submitted by: Lejla Hasandedic, URI Europe

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Host Cooperation Circles: Multiple

Location: Tyrol, Austria

This year we were very successful with an information campaign about the WIHW and our special project of “Candles for Forgiveness.” Every school with children of 14 years and up got a set of posters with information about the world’s major religions and ethic questions for mankind.

Also, soldiers in a casern and refugees are now able to learn more about the different faith and their common beliefs. We gave it to the Imam too. The material is offered by the World Ethic Institut in Germany, and with a print version of the posters, teachers can work for years now. The posters can be bought also in English. 

A very good method for talking with children about the question, “Who created everything?“ is the story from an Austrian writer with pictures from an Italian artist. “The Little Owl.” It was translated from friends in at now in 45 languages, and can be printed out on the website for free.

During WIHW we gave little books to schools to use them for education. We would be very happy to get more translations to put on the website. I was told that the Arabic version is only for Egypt and should be made for other countries too. The translations come also from refugees, who have now a new life in our town. It would be nice to have the money to organize videos with the different versions. 

On Saturday, Feruary 7th, 2015, at 7 PM CMT, we lighted "Candles for Forgiveness" in front of the house for refugees, inviting contemplation and healing for religious violence in families and worldwide. Men, women and children from Syria, Iraq, Dagestan, Bosnia, Uganda, Kenya, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Ghana, Palestine, and Cechenia thanked us for the possibility and together we prayed for all countries experiencing violence.

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Stones from more than 80 countries and from holy places of different religions give a special feeling of compassion.

A Catholic bishop, Dr. Manfred Scheuer from Tyrol, lit an altar candle for a man and woman who were beheaded by the Nazis 70 years ago because they did not agree with the war. He took the candle to the capital of Tyrol, where his prayers for forgiveness and a peaceful future were broadcasted all over Austria. Four more churches burned candles and offered prayers for the rest of February. We invited spiritual groups from all over Austria to pray simultaneously. It was a very touching time and we will do it again next year. In four more churches, candles burned and prayers were held during all of February. 

In newspapers nationwide, there was information spread about the World Interfaith Harmony Week and about the webcast from the meeting at the United Nations in New York about the role of religions to reach the post-millennium goals of a sustainable development.

This candle stands in the church of a house for elderly people, where a lot of them fought during World War II and probably did harm to others.

On the official URI Facebook Page and on the one from the Parliament of the World's Religions, we posted the information too.

On www.gratefulness.org everybody could light a virtual candle in a group called WIHW. Schools were invited to participate. Information was posted about the Candle Project in a Facebook group with members from Native American spiritual traditions. The big King Abdullah Interreligious Centre KAICCID in Vienna told us that they will join and the Austrian Ministry of foreign affairs and Europe called me for a common action. They organized a big meeting in a monastery with members from different religions. 

All 72 Austrian catholic monasteries for women and a lot of other groups were invited to pray with us for religious peace at the same time on Saturday, 7th at 7 PM GMT WIHW 2015 in Austria. It was a very touching time and we will be a part again next year. During this year we want to collect the money for a special bell for “Peace and Friendship” between people from different religions. We hope it will be finished until WIHW 2016 on a mountain near our city Lienz in Eastern Tyrol. We want to thank all other people and groups worldwide, who participated in WIHW for the great work. It brings a lot of hope to be not alone to take action for a peaceful world.

As-salamu alaykum to all. God bless you. 

Submitted by Elisabeth Ziegler-Duregger, and all members from the WIHW Team in Lienz/Austria.

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Photo taken by Saana Olkkonen, showing: Omer Mahamed Hussein, co chair of Islamic society Rabita; Erja Varis, Tibetan culture and Buddhism specialist; Päivi Käri-Zein, International Business lecturer; Lars Silén, URI CC Forum of Religions in Helsinki coordinator & Espoo Bahai community member; Heidi Rautionmaa, University Chaplain & co chair of RfP Women of Faith Network in Europe and URI in Finland; and Paulos Huang, specialist on Chinese philosophy & Lutheran pastor.

Host Cooperation Circles: Multiple

Location: Helsinki, Finland

People from different faiths participated in the World Interfaith Harmony Week event organized by University of Applied Sciences and the Union of Lutheran Parishes in Helsinki. The theme of this class for mainly business students was: how different values in cultures affect business.

This video, by Won Buddhist in NYC, presents photos from the celebration

 

Submitted by: Heidi Rautionmaa 

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Host Cooperation Circle: BRIDGES – Eastern European Forum for Dialogue
Location: Sofia, Bulgaria

At the Bureau of the European Parliament in Sofia on 6 February 2015, outstanding Bulgarian writers, journalists, artists, governmental representatives and nongovernmental activists, as well as public and religious figures, gathered together for a round-table discussion in search of a new dimension of tolerance: post-crisis, post-2014 European elections, post-Charlie…

Read the full report here.

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Sanjiv Balgobind, from ISKCON and a member of IBS, pronouncing a reflection

Host Cooperation Circle: Stichting Interreligieus Beraad Segbroek (IBS) (Foundation Interreligious Council Segbroek)
Location: Segbroek (The Hague, The Netherlands)

Stichting Interreligieus Beraad Segbroek (IBS) (Foundation Interreligious Council Segbroek) CC celebrated World Interfaith Harmony Week on Sunday, February 1st by organizing a moment of meditation with the renewed Living and Care Centre "Jonker Frans" for elder people in The Hague.

 

Read the full report here.

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Euro-Asia CC members

Host Cooperation Circle: Euro-Asia CC
Location: Russian Federation

During World Interfaith Harmony Week at the beginning of February 2015, some of the members of our organization participated in the action, organized by UPF local branch. We visited 6 religious centers where we were welcomed very warmly and were pleased to learn more about Russian Orthodox, Islamic, Judaism, Mormon, Vedic and Catholic religious ways.

 

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Host Cooperation Circle: Interfaith Forum of Muslim and Christian Women’s Association

Location: Kaduna, Nigeria

The Women’s Interfaith Council (WIC), aka Interfaith Forum of Muslim and Christian Women’s Association, organized its annual Interfaith Solidarity Prayer to bring together participants from many women’s faith groups including NGOs, the Bureau for Religious Affairs (Christian and Islamic Matters), O.L.A. Sisters, URI’s African GC African Trustee, and more. The representative of the First Lady of Kaduna State expressed delight in the interfaith solidarity prayer, which she said was not only very timely, but will also contribute greatly to the building of sustainable peace.

Submitted by Emmanuel Ivorgba, Regional Coordinator, West Africa

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Host Cooperation Circle: Faiths Together Uganda

Location: Uganda

Faiths Together Uganda (FTU) CC is located in Seeta-Mukono, Uganda. We primarily engage youth from Muslim, Pentecostal, Anglican, SDA, African Spiritual, & Orthodox communities. We are actively working to heal fragile communal relations in the face of recent ethnic/religious violence and polarization that has swept our country and region. We use song and dance to bring members of different cultures and religions together, and to pass on the message of religious tolerance. Our main programs include interfaith-intercultural clubs on school campuses and organizing an intercultural performance troupe. Faiths Together Uganda has helped many of their youth participants forge strong relationships across cultural and religious lines through collaborative action and dialogue.

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A child with special needs (on a wheel chair) joins the WIHW celebrations by sounding the peace drums

A drum is considered one of Africa’s leading means of communication. The peace drum initiative comes to front the interfaith and religious tolerance. The Initiative uses art and music as an instrumental tool in bridging the gap between people of different religions to express love for oneself and one another, enhancing thus enhancing social harmony and development.

During this year’s World Interfaith Harmony Week (WIHW), we used two big drums as symbols of interfaith and inter-cultural diversity. One drum is black and the other is white, representing the different races. We believe that drums as a symbol of peace have reawakened the minds of young people towards tolerance. This initiative is also intended to reawaken the schools and surrounding communities to the culture of sounding drums as a symbol of peace.

The peace drums were also extended to Children with Special Needs, an often “forgotten” group in peace and development campaigns. This was intended to give them a platform for their voices to be heard as human beings with equal rights to others. The children had a moment to sing together a famous Bob Marley song; “One Love,” led by Marco De Jong, a music Intern from the Netherlands. He had this to say about religion: “It is so hard for people of different religions to work together back home in the Netherlands as I have witnessed here today. This is a lesson I will take home with me.” The message was to use art and music to build the spirit of oneness and harmony among people of different faiths.

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Stickers appended by pupils with messages of peace and love

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Marco De Jong, a music Intern from Netherlands, in a music moment with the pupils

As a climax of the celebrations, a verbal, open-air declaration was made by all pupils, students and teachers through a phrase reading: “We Declare That we will live, respect Religious Differences, Value love of all, and say no to Religious Based Violence To Bring Lasting Peace To Humanity.” This was followed by signing of the ‘declaration banner‘ by teachers, students, and religious leaders. Members of the community joined by expressing their commitment towards global peace and a sustainable development by sounding the Interfaith Harmony Peace Drums and appending their signatures on the Declaration banner.

Faiths Together Uganda Cooperation Circle, together with Michael Buyondo and Marco De Jong, a music Intern from the Netherlands, organized Interfaith Harmony week celebrations in multiple schools involving a Peace Drums Initiative called Sound of Peace. The goal was to cultivate a culture of love and tolerance to bridge religious and social cultural differences through the arts.

Submitted by: Despina Namwembe, Regional Coordinator, United Religions Initiative (URI) - Great Lakes Africa

 

 

 

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Host Cooperation Circles: Ekta SangathanRoshini, & Udaan

Location: West India

Cooperation Circles from West India took community groups to visit the places of worship for different religious communities. For all of them, it was the first visit of its kind. It was heartening to see priests welcoming the groups warmly and sharing teachings from their respective scriptures as the groups experienced other religions’ rituals and sermons for the first time.

The participants’ feedback was very moving and emotional. Some said that, after the communal violence, URI was the first organization to guide community members in an interfaith experience. The values of love and compassion shone through the apprehension they had experienced prior to participating.

 

Submitted by: Qutub Jehan Kidwai, Regional Coordinator, West Zone, India

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Delegates of the Colombo conference with chief guests and dignitaries

Host Cooperation Circles: Cosmic Community CentreInterfaith Dialogue Centre Kollam, & Sarvodaya Shanti Sena

Location: Aluthgama, Sri Lanka

The 6th International Interfaith Conference on Holy Books was held in the first week of February at the Sarvodaya Institute of Higher Learning, Sri Lanka. This was organized by the Cosmic Community Centre Karickam in collaboration with Dr. Alexander Marthoma Centre for Dialogue Kottarakara, Kerala and the Sarvodaya Santhisena, Sri Lanka. It was held as part of UN Interfaith Harmony Week, 2015. About 125 delegates from different parts of the world attended the four days of programs.

See a 30-minute video of the conference produced by Arise Kochi.

Submitted by: Abraham Karickam, Regional Coordinator, India, South Zone

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Host Cooperation Circles: Karickam International Public SchoolCosmic Community Centre, & Kerala Kavya Kala Sahithy

Location: Kerala, India

Karickam International Public School in Kerala, India, held a colorful Proclamation Peace Procession in honor of Interfaith Harmony Week. Rev. Dr. Victor Kazanjian (International Executive Director of United Religions Initiative), who was visiting Kerala, inaugurated the peace procession by flying a pigeon to the skies. He also flagged off the March which was led by a students’ band from the forefront.

The inaugural session was presided over by Dr. Abraham Karickam, Chairman of the school. Many other dignitaries from various organizations were also present on the occasion. Hundreds of students in numerous fashions participated in the peace procession. Many of them were carrying white flags and a number of posters declaring the glory of peace and evils of war. The program was a great success and helped in really promoting deep interfaith harmony and peace.

A large number of spectators (including students’ parents) viewed the peace procession from both sides of the main road through which the participants marched. This has become a regular feature in the area, and the people belonging to several communities flock on both sides of the road to encourage the peace walkers. They walk a distance of two kilometers.

Submitted by: Abraham Karickam, Regional Coordinator, India, South Zone

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Host Cooperation Circle: Rural Development Society

Location: Bankura, West Bengal India

The Rural Development Society celebrated World Interfaith Harmony Week among the members with a special honor to Mahatma Gandhi, and later members did an interfaith prayer including music. Rev. Kisku addressed the gathering. The URI principles and a peace message were read. The event took place for two days.

Submitted by: Biswadeb Chakraborty, Regional Coordinator, India, East Zone

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Host Cooperation Circle: Ektaan

Location: Burnpur, West Bengal India

Ektaan CC celebrated interfaith harmony week on two days. The first day, musicians presented several instrumental performances for an audience of nearly a hundred people. Regional Coordinator Biswadeb Chakraborty was present to address the gathering on interfaith harmony week and message of peace.

For the second day of celebration, Ektaan’s long time associate the DPSC Ladies Social Club sponsored warm clothes, which were distributed among the needy women. Mr. Kaushik Chatterjee and other Ektaan members were present to render the service; children were given chocolate and biscuits.

Submitted by: Biswadeb Chakraborty, Regional Coordinator, India, East Zone

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Host Cooperation Circle: Samaj Joro Abhiyan 

Location: Medininagar, India

Samaj Joro Abhiyan CC called a joint meeting among the villagers to celebrate interfaith harmony week by taking resolution that they would not engage into any form of conflicts or violence, and they would work with young people to create local employment to avoid drug addiction and other antisocial activities. They worked toward women’s empowerment and engagement in social actions.

Mr. Chhamenswar Mehta, Cooperation Circle leader, addressed the gathering about Interfaith Harmony Week and role of URI in daily life. Nearly 100 needy villagers were given blankets on the same day, which were sponsored by URI East India.

Submitted by: Biswadeb Chakraborty, Regional Coordinator, India, East Zone

 

 

 

 

 

Host Cooperation Circle: Cooperation Circle for Dialogue

Location: Caracas, Venezuela

Members of Venezuelan’s URI CC for Dialogue and Luis Dolan’s Chair, friends, and peace lovers came together inside the Diocesan Center of Anglican Episcopal Church in Caracas. Catholic, Anglican, Presbyterian, Buddhist, Baha’i, Brahma Kumaris and Hare Krishnas offered songs, pieces of their scripture, and prayers to inspire peace and harmony towards reconciliation and unity.

The gathering was hosted by Monsignor Orlando Guerrero, Bishop of Venezuela and Curacao, who is nationally and internationally recognized for his interfaith work. The altar of the Anglican Chapel was specially decorated to present symbols from multiple spiritual traditions including Christian symbols, the emblem of the Brahma Kumaris, a representation of the Buddha, and the seven-branched candelabrum.

Enoé Texier, URI Regional Coordinator for Latin America and The Caribbean, made the opening remarks explaining the meaning of the United Nations‘s call to the celebrate the World Interfaith Harmony Week. The meeting closed with sharing foods and drinks all participants brought.

Submitted by: Dra. Enoé Texier, Coordinadora Regional de la Iniciativa para las Religiones Unidas, (URI) América Latina & El Caribe

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Representation of the Birth of Jesus and the decoration for the ritual

Host Cooperation Circle: Quinaroa

Location: Lagunillas, Mérida. Venezuela

Our URI CC Quinaroa gathers members from different faiths: Catholic, Evangelical and Indigenous Cosmovision, who came together offering prayers and songs that inspire peace and harmony towards reconciliation and unity. On Tuesday 2nd for the WIHW they celebrated the ritual Paradura of the Child Jesus, which is a traditional family gathering. They listened to religious music, playing violins, cuatro, maracas and other instruments, and they shared foods and sweets with friends and relatives. The ritual centered on engaging in prayer for the welfare of society.

Submitted by: Dra. Enoé Texier, Coordinadora Regional de la Iniciativa para las Religiones Unidas, (URI) América Latina & El Caribe

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Host Cooperation Circle: Spiritual Forum Santiago

Location: Santiago, Chile & Concepción, Chile

In Chile, in the cities of Santiago and Concepción, two activities for dialogue and reflection were organized in the framework of the Interfaith Harmony Week. The Community of Reflection and Ecumenical Spirituality (CREE), who is a member of the Cooperation Circle Spiritual Forum of Santiago for Peace, which is a member of the United Religions Initiative for Latin America & the Caribbean, organized these activities. Most of the attendees were from different faith traditions such as: Christians, Catholics and evangelicals. 

Submitted by: Dra. Enoé Texier, Coordinadora Regional de la Iniciativa para las Religiones Unidas, (URI) América Latina & El Caribe

 

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Host Cooperation Circle: CARAVAN 

Location: Paris, France

Following the recent tragedy in Paris and in the midst of the increasing chasm of discord and misunderstanding that exists between the Middle East and the West, and between Christians, Muslims and Jews, the 7th CARAVAN Exhibition of Visual Art titled The Bridge opened in Paris, France at the historic Church of Saint Germain des Prés in the Latin Quarter, the oldest church in Paris, to commemorate the United Nations World Interfaith Harmony Week.

The Bridge involves a diverse range of Arab, Persian and Jewish visual artists. Participating artists include women and men, from premier contemporary artists to emerging younger artists, from the three primary monotheistic faith backgrounds and 13 countries. Each artist has submitted one original work (done specifically for the exhibition) addressing the theme “The Bridge,” focusing on what they hold in common through their cultures and creeds, illustrating their ideas of how to build bridges between us all.

Submitted by: Rev. Canon Paul-Gordon Chandler, Founder/President, CARAVAN

 


 

Host Cooperation Circle: Hope In Life Foundation

Location: Around the World

The “Compassion Games: Survival of the Kindest” is a collaboration exercise designed to awaken us to the power we each have as “players” to choose to play the “game” of life differently (and more compassionately) with each other and ourselves. For World Interfaith Harmony Week, over 30 teams around the world submitted nearly 100 reports showing that well over 50,000 people were served through the Compassion Games in this seven-day “coopetition.”

See the Compassion Games video.

Submitted by: Sari Heidenreich, Regional Coordinator for North America 

 

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Host Cooperation Circle: URI Global Support Staff Deepening the Journey

Location: San Francisco, California, North America

The United Religions Initiative global office staff gathered for the afternoon to share in a time of conversation, appreciation, and meditation surrounding World Interfaith Harmony Week.

Submitted by: Sari Heidenreich, Regional Coordinator for North America 

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Host Cooperation Circle: University of Rochester Interfaith Chapel

Location: Rochester, New York, North America

Fifteen non-Muslim students visited the Islamic Center of Rochester (ICR) and learned about Islam from the youth group at the ICR. They observed prayer, toured the center and engaged in interfaith dialogue with the members of the ICR youth group. For all but one of them, this was the first time they had ever visited a mosque or spoken to Muslims.

The Student Association for Interfaith Cooperation teamed up with the University’s Pride Network to sponsor an evening of interfaith conversation at our weekly Interfaith Cafe on the issue of the intersection of LGBTQIA identity and religion. Given that religions are typically seen as hostile to the LGBTQIA community and that the issue of LGBTQIA inclusion is often avoided in interfaith conversations, SAIC wanted to offer an opportunity for that kind of dialogue to occur. We were delighted to see students at the Interfaith Chapel for this conversation who usually avoid anything remotely religious. The conversations were lively and informative and students learned about religious traditions where the LGBTQIA community can safely pursue their religious life.

Submitted by: Sari Heidenreich, Regional Coordinator for North America 

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Host Cooperation Circle: Silicon Valley Interreligious Council

Location: Sunnyvale, California, North America

We embarked on a group discussion with brothers and sisters from different faiths sharing their religion’s view on compassion as part of an event hosted by the Silicon Valley Interreligious Council (SiVIC)’s and the Pacifica Institute in celebration of World Interfaith Harmony Week and as part of the Compassion Games’ Interfaith League.

Submitted by: Sari Heidenreich, Regional Coordinator for North America 

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Host Cooperation Circles: InterFaith Works & Women Transcending Boundaries

Location: Syracuse, New York, North America

Celebrating the United Nation’s annual observance of World Interfaith Harmony Week, the sanctuary of St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral in downtown Syracuse was filled with a kaleidoscope of different faith communities. On February 8th, the colors of our stained glass windows were bested by the colorful community assembled within. Muslims joined with Christians, Jews joined with Muslims, Mormons joined with Lutherans, Hindus, Sikhs, Sudanese Christians, Zen Buddhist monks joined with Unity; all to express our commonality within diversity.

Submitted by: Sari Heidenreich, Regional Coordinator for North America 

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Host Cooperation Circle: Abbey of HOPE

Location: Brunswick, Maine, North America

Abbey of HOPE hosted a World Interfaith Harmony Week observance with people from Jewish, Christian, Interfaith, Earth Based spirituality and Scientology joining together to reflect, sing and make peace flags.

Submitted by: Sari Heidenreich, Regional Coordinator for North America 

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Host Cooperation Circle: Arizona Interfaith Movement

Location: Phoenix, Arizona, North America

The Arizona Interfaith Movement kicked off the week with their “Souper Bowl Kickoff Luncheon” to help tackle hunger. As many celebrated the 49th Super Bowl game, they remained mindful of those without a bowl of soup to eat.

Submitted by: Sari Heidenreich, Regional Coordinator for North America 

Cooperation Circles Involved

BRIDGES CC

"Our purpose is to promote religious tolerance and peaceful co-existence between people of different religious traditions."

Stichting Interreligieus Beraad Segbroek

“Our purpose is to enhance peaceful coexistence in the multicultural and multireligious district of Segbroek (The Hague, The Netherlands); to contribute to and enhance the livability and the cosmopolitan feel of this district; and to organize activities, meetings and projects with other institutions that bring about social change, such as the work to prevent poverty.”

Euro-Asia CC

"Our purpose is to encourage people in the region to unite in the name of the common good and to promote interfaith cooperation between people of all races, cultures, social status. We also wish to share our Siberian heritage and in turn, learn about other nations."

Faiths Together Uganda

"Our purpose: to promote inter-spiritual values; harmonize the different minority faiths; advocate for respect, transparency, and fairness; and eliminate corrupt and compromised practices that create indifferences among the different faiths in the world. In addition to the above, we promote equal and significant opportunities for all, while encouraging worthwhile participation of different communities as key players in numerous activities and initiatives that have a bearing on their wellbeing as people of faith thus fostering sustainable development."

UDAAN

“Our purpose is to promote community peace building, religious harmony and revive religious values through interfaith community events such as their Kite Festival.”

Ektaan CC

"Our purpose is: to foster healing through music, art and culture; to create a communal platform of cross-cultural dialogue; to develop understanding among traditions through shared learning; and to aim for a peaceful, blissful community."