The Interfaith Harmony Picnic this coming Saturday August 2 is a continuation of the dialogue and sharing that began at the first event sponsored by the Tri-City Interfaith Council. On February 1st this year, this council representing the three cities of Fremont, Newark and Union City celebrated World Interfaith Harmony Day. It was a local commemoration of World Interfaith Harmony Week, first proposed at the United Nations in 2010 by H. M. King Abdullah II of Jordan, and observed the following year.
Islamic Networks Group Director Ameena Jandali, among others, participated in an interfaith panel of religious leaders in February. Booths were set up at the Fremont Veterans Memorial Building to provide information about the beliefs of different traditions. Participants included those of other faiths and those of no faith. Local atheist, Bahai, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim, Sikah, Unitarian Universalist, and other communities took part. Coordinator Moina Shaiq, also founder of the Muslim Support Network http://muslimsupportnetwork.org/about/ said she wanted the event “to promote mutual understanding and interreligious dialogue as first steps to a culture of peace.”
A lot of energy for understanding and inspiring peaceful communication between religions has been pouring forth like “living water” to refresh the community from this group. One active member of the Tri-City Interfaith Council, Reverend Jeffery Spencer of Niles Discovery Church, has started another project. He invited individuals from all faith communities in the Tri-Cities to sign the Charter of Compassion that was created by British author and teacher of religion, Karen Armstrong, in 2008. You can add your signature at http://charterforcompassion.org/the-charter.
Organized groups can sign the Charter and apply to become Partner Organizations. Reverend Spencer’s goal is to designate Niles Discovery Church, http://www.nilesdiscoverychurch.org/, as a partner and to ask The Tri-City Interfaith Council to work on designating Fremont, Union City, and Newark as Compassionate Cities. Visit his blog at: http://jeffsjottings.wordpress.com/category/politics/
This coming month Tri-City Interfaith Council, in association with Alameda County Human Relations Commission, Interfaith Women of Peace, and Pax Christi USA are sponsoring an Interfaith Picnic on Saturday August 2nd, 2014, 2 - 4 pm in Meyer Park, 38225 Glenmoor Dr. Fremont. Everyone is invited to bring chairs, umbrellas, toys for kids, and some finger food to share. Drinks, paper cups, and plates will be provided. You can enjoy the summer with family and new friends while learning about other people’s cultures and beliefs.
For more information contact Moina at 510-938-0536.