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February 01, 2017, 9:55 AM

World Interfaith Harmony Week 2017

World Interfaith Harmony Week 2017

InterFaith Works and Women Transcending Boundaries, two URI North America groups, celebrate WIHW 2017 with "Love is the Answer" - a message of harmony and tolerance showcasing the many faith traditions in Central New York.

The United Religions Initiative family is celebrating World Interfaith Harmony Week (WIHW) around the planet. The United Nations has designated February 1-7 of every year as a time to celebrate interfaith peace and cooperation worldwide. Stay tuned and keep checking this page for more URI celebrations, as we are adding new stories and photos every day!

Special Announcement: URI West Africa's Interfaith Harmony Week 2017 Event has been recognized for Honorable Mention for the King Abdallah WIHW 2017 Prize!

 


 

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For tips on how to get the best press coverage for your WIHW event, click here


View celebrations by region:

Africa

Asia

Europe

Latin America and the Caribbean

Middle East and North Africa

Multi-Region

North America

Southeast Asia and the Pacific


 

Cooperation Circle: URI – Great Lakes Africa Region: Body and Soul CC, Restoring and Empowering communities CC, Twekolere Women’s Development CC, Interfaith and Intercultural Dialogue CC, Acholi Religious Leaders Peace Initiative Cooperation Circle, and Golden Women Vision Uganda CC

Location: Africa, Uganda, Adjumani

Event Type: Refugee Camp Visit

On the 31st of January, we left for the northern part of Uganda in a place called Adjumani (which borders Southern Sudan) to celebrate the Interfaith Harmony Week. We celebrated with our brothers and sisters who are now refugees in Uganda because of the insurgency going on in their country. All the staff of URI-Great Lakes Africa Region went together with seven Cooperation Circle representatives including: Body and Soul CC, Restoring and Empowering communities CC, Twekolere Women’s Development CC, Interfaith and Intercultural Dialogue CC, Acholi Religious Leaders Peace Initiative Cooperation Circle, and Golden Women Vision Uganda CC. Bishop Ochola, Sheikh Musa Khalil, Pastor Patrick Okecha, and Gopiratte Das from the Hare Krishna also went with us. 

Read more and see more photos here.


Cooperation Circle: Nasolo Cooperation Circle

Location: Africa, Blantyre, Malawi

Event Type: Humanitarian Event

On 6th to 7th February 2017, Nasolo Cooperation Circle celebrated World Interfaith Harmony Week at Blantyre Rural Area. This is an area where there are high levels of gender-based violence, discrimination and stigma towards those living with HIV/AIDS and people with albinism. These people are killed, as some people believe that their bones can bring wealth.

Learn more and see more photos here.


Announcement: URI West Africa's Interfaith Harmony Week 2017 Event has been recognized for Honorable Mention for the King Abdallah WIHW 2017 Prize!

Cooperation Circle: URI – West Africa Region

Location: Africa, Nigeria, Abuja

Event Type: Education Conference

Universal Peace Federation (UPF) - Nigeria in partnership with United Religions Initiative (URI) - West Africa will host the observation of the 2017 World Interfaith Harmony Week with a special conference on interreligious peace education.

As part of activities to commemorate the United Nations World Interfaith Harmony Week 2017, UPF-Nigeria and the URI West Africa will convene, on February 4, 2017, a Special Conference of Religious Educators, Leaders and Organizations (CORELO) on Interreligious Peace Education for National Harmony and Cooperation.

The conference will bring together religious educators and leaders, government representatives, policymakers, UPF Ambassadors for Peace, URI Cooperation Circles (CCs) and other critical stakeholders from NGOs and faith-based institutions.

The conference will inspire discussions on the need for an interreligious peace culture, structure and infrastructure as well as interreligious initiatives for national harmony. The conference will be used to formally present the UPF-Nigeria 2017 Agenda and discussions on some of the URI initiatives, which are focused on the promotion of interreligious cooperation and will have some participants including Hon. Elisha Buba Yero, a Global Council Trustee for URI designated as Ambassadors for Peace dedicated to interreligious cooperation.

The conference also will feature the inauguration of the Ambassadors for Peace Committee on Interreligious Affairs, which will work in 2017 on the following activities:

  • Introduction of the Religious Youth Service Project
  • National Interreligious Education Program
  • Advocacy for the Creation of a National Assembly Committee on Interreligious Affairs
  • The need for the government of Nigeria to establish a Religious Affairs Commission/Ministry
  • Renewal of the National Interreligious Council
  • Launch of the Peaceful Capital Territory Initiative (PCTI)

The conference is scheduled to be held from noon to 5 p.m. at the Banquet Hall of the National Merit Award House in the Maitama district of Abuja, the nation’s capital. This is to invite you to attend this special conference and be part of the process of facilitating interreligious harmony and cooperation.

There will be a special presentation on the URI PPPs by Hon. Elisha Buba Yero, our URI Global Council Trustee.

Read more: "UN World Interfaith Harmony Week Commemorated In Nigeria" at newsdiaryonline.com. 


Cooperation Circle: URI – Lower Shire Interfaith Initiative

Location: Mulilima, Chikwawa, Southern Region, Malawi

Event Type: Prayers and Fellowship / Meditation / Prayer / Ceremony

For the first time, youths from the Muslim communities, Christians and Gule Wamkulu cult came together in peace to give praise and thanks to God the Almighty for His grace this year in protecting and sparing the Bello community from floods and drought. 

Read more and see more photos here.


Cooperation Circle: URI – Golden Women Vision in Uganda

Location: Uganda

Event Type: Interfaith Gathering / Demonstration

Golden Women Vision Uganda, together with people of different faiths, joined in a march with the aim of stopping heavy drinking in Gulu District. We especially focused on the alcohol that comes packed in plastic sachets (also known as Sachet Waragi), which claimed many lives of our people who died some good years back. At the moment, many men are falling into heavy drinking and failing in their responsibilities as parents. So we marched to showcase that we want there be no more alcohol sachets, so that many people can practice their different faiths and be exemplary to other neighboring countries. This is especially important now, since it was the World Interfaith Harmony Week. This took place on February 6, 2017.

Learn more and see more photos here.

 


Cooperation Circle: URI – Lilongwe Central Cooperation

Location: Africa, Malawi, Lilongwe

Event Type: Dance / Music / Celebration / Interfaith Togetherness Party

We will have special harmony events, whereby we will have an interfaith togetherness party which will combine many interfaith leaders, village chiefs and other people. This will be a mix-up party with music and dances. We will partner with YASED, and Kalonga CC, as well as Friends of Monkey Bay Culture Organisation. Also involved will be: Senior Shelkh Ibrahim, Traditional Authority Namkhumba, Evengelist Makupe, Chief Chinsapo, and Word Conseller Namakhwa. This will promote community solidarity, as we are facing minor interfaith conflict and culture erosion.


Cooperation Circle: URI – Kasinje CC

 Location: Africa, Malawi

Event Type: Panelist Discussion

Kasinje Cooperation Circle, from Malawi, celebrated World Interfaith Harmony Week on the 4th and 7th of February, 2017 at Kasinje Primary School ground. On 4 February, we organised a two-hour panel discussion on the topic: 'Let's Respect The Rights Of The Less Privileged, Minority And Vulnerable Groups Such As Children, The Aged And The Physically Challenged. Give Conflicts And Any Form Of Discrimination No Room On Earth.'

The panelists were:

  1. Johnas Mwatseteza, Lecture, Chancellor College -  University of Malawi
  2. Pamela Makwangwala - Politician
  3. Traditional Authority Ganya representing Indigenous Traditions
  4. Canon Raphael Majeza representing Christian community
  5. Sheik Lister Omar representing Islamic
  6. Duncan Singano representing Baha'i
  7. Ethel Mayenda representing the youth.

The Director of Ceremonies was Martin Tchiphi from Kasinje Cooperation Circle. The panelists came up with the following resolutions:

  1. All human rights must be respected regardless of gender, sex, religion, political differences, race etc., because we are all one and unique.
  2. The youth must refrain from being used by politicians and religious leaders to cause violence.
  3. If conflicts arise, they must be resolved peacefully.

On 7 Feb. we organised interfaith prayers. We prayed for love and peace on Earth. Religions present: Christianity, Islamic, Baha'i and Indigenous Traditions. Other activities done were: poems, songs, traditional dances and comedies.


 

Cooperation Circle: Community Organization for People Empowerment (COPE Pakistan)

Location: Asia, Pakistan, Okara

Event Type: Meditation / Prayer / Ceremony, Dance / Music / Celebration

COPE Pakistan CC celebrated World Interfaith Harmony Week on 5th February, 2017 at Anwar Shaheed Colony Renala Khurd, by bringing together children from different religions, including Muslims and Christians.

Read more about this event here.


Cooperation Circle: URI Sri Lanka (All 12 Cooperation Circles)

Location: Kandy, Sri Lanka

Event Type: Gathering / Tree Planting

URI Sri Lanka celebrated World Interfaith Harmony Week 2017 by gathering URI members for the workshop on the Initiative of URI CCS to Protect Democratic Rights, in Kandy on 03rd – 05th February 2017. We held a tree planting event on February 04th. All Sri Lankans celebrate Independence Day on 04th February 2017. Sri Lanka has 12 URI Cooperation Circles, and all URI leaders and members were participating in the WIHW event.

Learn more and see more photos here.


 

Cooperation Circle: Karickam International Public School CCZero Limits CC

Location: Asia, Kottarakkara, India

Event Type: Dance / Music / Celebration/ Arts

URI South India Region is hosting an “Interfaith Arts Fest,” with competitions for school and college students in painting, essay, and elocution, as well as quizzes based on Holy Scriptures. More than 100 students will be participating in this Interfaith Arts Fest. We will collaborate with YMCA and All Kerala Balajana Skhyam. Hindus, Christians, Muslims, and Dalits will be involved.    


Cooperation Circle: Palki Peace Circle

Location: Kolkata State, West Bengal, India

Event Type: Humanitarian Free Meal

Like last year, we were able to celebrate with a midday meal of hotchpotch, potato curry, chutney and sweets for the destitute, irrespective of their caste, creed, colour, or religion. Since the celebration was a big deal, the preparation was started one day earlier. Our members and supporters took on a big role to fulfill the goal to establish peace among different people of various ages and religions.

Read more about this event here.


Cooperation Circle: URI Bangladesh

Location: Asia, Bangladesh, Dhaka

Event Type: Peace Rally

The Department of World Religions and Culture & the Center for Inter-religious and Intercultural Dialogue of the University of Dhaka, in collaboration of IARF and URI, held a Peace Rally inside the university campus today (2nd Feb.) at 10 A M.. The Rally was inaugurated by the Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Dr. AAMS Arefin Siddique. Before the Rally, the Dean of the Faculty of Arts, some teachers of the Department, the Director of the Center, and the Chairman of the Department, spoke on the importance of interfaith harmony to promote world peace.



Cooperation Circle: URI South India

Location: Asia, South India

Event Type: Gathering

URI South India Region concluded UN Interfaith Harmony Week with a "Human Wall of Love". We want to defend peace by breaking the walls of hatred. Hundreds of students and Cooperation Circle leaders joined the party in reaction to all forms of evil and violence.

 


Cooperation Circle: Karachi URI CC, Islamabad Multi URI CC

Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

Event Type: Gathering

On Tuesday 31 January 2017, a momentous `WIHW Welcome Conference` was held under the auspices of Universal Interfaith Peace Mission(UIPM) - Gold Medalist and awarded the First Prize of HM King Abdullah II of Jordan for the best performance in spreading the message of the World Interfaith Harmony Week of UN in 2015.

Read more and see photos here.


Cooperation Circle: URI North Zone of India and Afghanistan

Location: Asia, Delhi, India

Event Type: Dance / Music / Celebration/ Arts / Radio Program

We in the North zone of India and Afghanistan joined hands with one of the largest university community radio stations in India, Delhi University, to air a five-day program on World Interfaith Harmony Week to reach out to thousands to people from diverse backgrounds, gender, age groups, professions, etc.

As the initiative hopes to take a step towards spreading the message of love, peace and harmony, the name of the show will be Ek Koshish (One Hope). It will be aired from 1st February- 5th February at 11:00 am IST at 90.4 FM.

Learn more here.

The full radio program is now online. Listen here:


Cooperation Circle: Community Organization for People Empowerment (COPE Pakistan) 

Location: Asia, Pakistan, Punjab

Event Type: Meditation / Prayer / Ceremony, Dance / Music / Celebration

We are celebrating World Interfaith Harmony week with children from different religions. COPE Pakistan CC has been working with URI Pakistan since 2014, with communities of different religions, for the promotion of peace and interfaith harmony in Pakistan. COPE Pakistan celebrates international days and has organized many programs with children, youth, women, and religious and political leaders, on peace, interfaith harmony, women’s empowerment, the role of youth in the peace process, the belief that children are the seeds of peace, and on interfaith prayers and religious festivals, such as Christmas and Eid. This is very important for us, so we collaborate with other interfaith organizations as Catholic TV, Renala Cable Network, A.M Welfare Society, Catholic Church, Catholic Sunday School, Shaheen Press Club, and Dost Ithad Group.

Every year, we organize a program on World Interfaith Harmony Week with interfaith communities including Christian, Muslims, Hindu and Sikh participants. As a Pakistani nation, we promote interfaith harmony and peace. Through this program, positive thinking will develop in all participants, which will come from different communities such as Hindu, Christian, Muslim and Sikh communities. We broadcast the messages of interfaith harmony and peace. Through the participants, this message will go to family, society, and community and friends.  May Peace Prevail on Earth!


Cooperation Circle: URI East India

Location: Asia, East India

Event Type: Sports / Art Competition / Interfaith Discussions

Namaskar. You all know that we celebrate the first week of February every year as the Interfaith Harmony Week. This year (2017), too, URI East India is going to observe the day in various places in the Eastern Zone. Many programs like youth sports, drawing competition & also discussions on interfaith relationship will be organized. The details of the programs will be brought out later.

Thanking you all,

Ria Mukherjee, Adm. Assistant URI East India 


Cooperation Circle: Parwaaj CC

Location: West India

Event Type: Celebrating with Children

CC Parwaaj and Youth Ambassador Shekhawat, under the URI banner, celebrated the Interfaith Week with school children and youth of the community. The programme started with introducing the group of children to URI and its activities. They were told that interfaith is cooperative, constructive and positive interaction between people of different religious traditions (i.e., "faiths") and/or spiritual or humanistic beliefs, at both the individual and institutional levels. It involves promoting understanding between different religions or beliefs to increase acceptance of others, rather than to synthesize new beliefs.

The role of children in promoting interfaith cooperation was discussed with them. Interfaith dialogue programs can be of significant value for younger participants in order to build understanding and to avoid conflict from a young age. Exposing children to interfaith dialogue is helpful because they are aware of interpersonal differences and are able to start to understand the perspectives of others. Eight-to-ten year olds are open-minded, curious, and verbal enough to engage in dialogue.

The children were also explained to about terrorism and its affects. Thereafter, they said their daily prayers and URI representatives translated the prayers to make the children understand what their daily prayers exactly mean.

Then the children were explained about effects of violence and non-violence. They were made aware about Gandhiji and his policy of non-violence, which led him to victory against the powerful British Empire. They were also told a short story about unity and non-violence.

The children then pledged together to remain united always and follow the policy of non-violence and remain away from hatred and communalism. 


Cooperation Circle: Inter Religion Harmony Society

Location: Asia, Dhaka, Bangladesh

Event Type: Awards Ceremony

Inter Religion Harmony Society (IRHS) Cooperation Circle organized a discussion meeting and award-giving ceremony to observe World Interfaith Harmony Week 2017 at 11 A.M. on the 4th of February at Lecture Theatre Bhaban, in the University of Dhaka.

Learn more and see more photos here.



Cooperation Circle: URI CC Lienz/Austria

Location: Europe, Austria, Lienz

Event Type: Interfaith Internet Groups, Film Showing, Building a Monument

As one of our World Interfaith Harmony Week 2017 projects, I started a new Facebook page: Let's Make Heaven on Earth Again. The page will connect people who work for this aim. URI Cooperation Circles are, of course, a big part in the Heaven on Earth wiki, and I am working to fill the country collections with groups I get to know. 

Now we show the film about the building of a tower for a "Bell for Peace and Friendship," with subtitles in English. Maybe some of you like the idea, that brings great joy to people of all ages. We are still searching for little stones from all over the world. 

With blessings to all of you, not only in this week,

Elisabeth and the team of the United Religions CC Lienz/Austria 


Cooperation Circle: Stichting Interreligieus Beraad Segbroek (Foundation Interreligious Council Segbroek) CC

Location: Europe, The Netherlands

Event Type: Interfaith Discussions, Readings, Gatherings

In the first week of February, IBS Cooperation Circle gives attention to the World Interfaith Harmony Week. Look below at the flyer with the invitation for some activities. The IBS asks you, as a person, foundation and/or organization, to spread the word about this event!

(English Translation of flyer)

From the IBS, we invite you warmly to participate in one or more of following programs:

  • Open days February 5 - 15:00 to 18:00 ISKCON (Hare Krishna), Reading, Puja ceremony and a vegetarian meal.
  • February 12 - 10:30 to 12:30 Holy Family Church, a celebration with young people after coffee and tea.
  • Wednesday, February 1 - 08:30 to 09:15 Intercultural tea and coffee morning at a Primary school.
  • Saturday, February 4 - 14:00 to 16:00 Youth meet Holy Family Church, Young people go from different religions in conversation the three principles.
  • Saturday, February 11 - 15:30 to 19:00 Theme day "Believe in sustainability Holy Family Church, Presentations on sustainability, inter alia, from various scriptures. opportunity for discussion between panel members and visitors.
  • Wednesday, February 1 - 08:30 to 09:15 Intercultural tea and coffee morning at a Primary school.
  • Saturday, February 4 - 14:00 to 16:00 Youth meet Holy Family Church, Young people go from different religions talk about the three principles.
  • Saturday, February 11 - 15:30 to 19:00 Theme day "Believe in sustainability Holy Family Church, Presentations on sustainability among others from different scriptures. Opportunity for discussion between Panel members and visitors. Following dinner.
  • February 5 - 15:00 to 18:00 ISKCON (Hare Krishna), Reading, Puja ceremony and a vegetarian meal. February 12 - 10:30 to 12:30 Holy Family Church, Honeysuckle Square 29 R.K. celebration with young people after coffee and tea.

Since 2011, from the UN on the initiative of King Abdullah II of Jordan worldwide 'The World Interfaith Harmony Week celebrated. This takes place during the first week of February. people various religious meet backgrounds together around three assumptions: love for God, love for fellow human beings and love for good. We hope to meet you!


Cooperation Circle: URI Europe

Location: Bonn, Germany

Event Type: Interfaith Film Screening

We screened the film “Queen of the Desert”, which offers a stunning dramatized account of Gertrude Bell, combining her life and love story with the political developments of her time. 

Learn more here.


 


 


Cooperation Circle: URI –  Rio Inter-Religious Movement CC (MIR)

Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Event Type: Book launch, interfaith talks, interfaith Sarau

On January 19, 2017, the important event "Religious Freedom: it is our fight" took place in the Brazilian Press Association (ABI), in the city of Rio de Janeiro. There were inter-religious talks, an Interfaith Sarau and the launching of the bilingual book: “Religious Intolerance in Brazil", of which Maria das Graças Nascimento, coordinator of the Rio de Janeiro Inter-Religious Movement Cooperation Circle, is co-author. The vice-coordinator of the Cooperation Circle, Alice Gress, was also representing URI at the event.

Read more (including translations to Spanish and Portuguese) and see more photos here.


Cooperation Circle: URI –  Rio Inter-Religious Movement CC (MIR)

Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Event Type: Ceremony

The Nowa Cumig Center of Native Traditions held a beautiful Ceremony of Thanks to the Waters on February 2, 2017 in Rio de Janeiro. The participants brought water from various origins (spring water, water from river, waterfall, lake, well, rain and sea) and danced, prayed and thanked all the waters that joined the waters of the sea on the Beach of Flamengo. So these waters "told the secrets" of the various places from which they came to the waters of the sea, which, in turn, inspired them to make the necessary changes both internally and externally. URI was represented at the event through the participation of Alice Gress, deputy coordinator of the Cooperation Circle Interreligious Movement of Rio de Janeiro.

Learn more, read Spanish and Portuguese translations, and see more photos here.


Cooperation Circle: URI – Círculo de Cooperação URI Goiás

Location: Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil

Event Type: Walk for Peace

The 2nd Walk for Peace took place in Parque Areião, in Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil, on January 21, 2017 as a celebration of the National Day to Combat Religious Intolerance and the World Interfaith Harmony Week. It was an important moment of fraternization and debate about the respect between different traditions. Attention was drawn to the need to safeguard the right of worship for all, and to combat prejudice, especially in relation to the traditions of African matrices, those that most face discrimination in Brazil.

Learn more, read Spanish and Portuguese translations, and see more photos here.


 

Cooperation Circle: URI – URI Brasilia CC

Location: Federal District, Brazil

Event Type: Events, Presentations

Several human rights bodies in the Federal District, Brazil, together with religious leaders and interreligious and ecumenical organizations, among them the United Religions Initiative - URI Brasilia - jointly built an agenda for the week of "National Day to Combat Religious Intolerance - January 21th". The agenda is also part of the World Interfaith Harmony Week celebrations.


 

Cooperation Circle: URI – Campinas CC

Location: Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil

Event Type: Gatherings

URI Campinas CC engaged in two events celebrating the National Day to Combat Religious Intolerance and the World Interfaith Harmony Week, under the prism of building a pluralistic society, based on the recognition and respect for differences of beliefs. On January 19, 2017 at 7:00 p.m., in the Red Hall of the City Hall of Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil, a Solemn Act of the Municipal Day to Combat Religious Intolerance was celebrated. It is in the official calendar of Campinas on the same date as the National Day to Combat Religious Intolerance, January 21. On this occasion the representatives of many traditions were invited to talk about life and death from the perspective of their tradition. The URI Global Council Trustee Salette Aquino spoke about respect and unity among religions.

On January 20, a beautiful meeting was held to celebrate cooperation and interfaith harmony at 7 pm at Casa de Cultura Fazenda Roseira (Rose Garden Farm Culture House), in Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil, with several religious representatives and 72 young people from the group "Juventude de Terreiro".

Learn more, read Spanish and Portuguese translations, and see more photos here.


 

Cooperation Circle: URI – Rio Inter-Religious Movement CC (MIR)

Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Event Type: Ceremony

Several traditions gathered to hold the "Blessing for the City of Rio de Janeiro", a beautiful ecumenical event that took place on January 20, 2017, in person and online. The event was headed by the organization Unindo Corações, and joined by the URI Circle of Cooperation Interreligious Movement of Rio de Janeiro (CC MIR), which encompasses Druidism, Candomblé, Hare Krishina, Brahma Kumaris, Catholic Church (Pastoral of the Minor), Native Traditions, Shamanism, Renewed Presbyterian Church, Renewed Ecumenical Church, Brahmatma Diva Band and the musician Ivair Vila Real.

Read more (including translations to Spanish and Portuguese) and see more photos here.


Cooperation Circle: URI –  Rio Inter-Religious Movement CC (MIR)

Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Event Type: Gathering

On January 28, 2017, the 1st Inter-Religious Forum of the Instituto Expo Religião took place in the City of Rio de Janeiro. It was an important event to bring clarification on the history of religions, and inter-religiosity in the sphere of public education and prevention of cases of religious intolerance. Present were representatives of various religions and traditions: Catholic, Mormon, Orthodox, Sunni Muslim, Shiite Muslim, Evangelical, Shaman, Indigenous, Pagan, Hare Krishna, Candomblé, Umbanda, Spiritist, Buddhist, Gypsy and Freemason.

Learn more and see more photos here.


 

Cooperation Circle: URI – URI Brasilia

Location: Brasilia, Brazil

Event Type: Gathering

We organized an event for World Harmony Week Among the Religions. Pastors, bishops and other religious leaders together with Mother Baiana, were able to express this commitment through the planting of a Brazil Pau, as a symbol of unity, resistance and renewal, also agreeing to return to reiterate the bonds of solidarity and respect.

See a video of the invitation and presentation of the event, and read more on the Facebook page

Our event was also featured on the official website of the Palmares Foundation - Government of Brazil. 


Cooperation Circle: URI –  Foro Espiritual de Santiago para la Paz CC

Location: Santiago, Chile

Event Type: Gathering

On February 1, Community Reflection and Ecumenical Spirituality (CREE) held a day of reflection with other organizations, including Victor Reyes from Santiago Spiritual Forum for Peace, about interfaith dialogue in relation to children. On that day, we took advantage of the opportunity to talk about interfaith harmony, and also had a time of prayer. Participants included Catholics, evangelicals and nondenominational Christian friends. In attendance were 20 people. It took place in a Catholic retreat house in Santiago de Chile. This was a beautiful shared reflection time.


 

Cooperation Circle: URI –  URI MENA Office, Quested Peace CCMercy CC

Location: Middle East and North Africa Region

Event Type: Creating a school for refugee children

URI MENA Office, in cooperation with Fundacja Spolecznie Bezpieczni, Poland, provided a Syrian refugee camp with a portable classroom. All the children we met at the refugee camp had never been in school, since the older ones (4-11 years old) fled with their families about five years ago from the violence in Syria. The younger ones were born in this refugee camp. Words cannot describe how happy the children were; the smiles never left their faces.

Read more about this event, and see many photos, here.


Cooperation Circle: URI –  Trust WIN CC

Location: Israel

Event Type: Interfaith Gathering and Culture Sharing

Forty Israeli and Palestinian women -- Druze, Jewish, and Muslim members of the Mada CC and Women Reborn CC's -- joined the TRUST WIN CC women. We began by reflecting on the difficult times in the world and in our region with hatred, racism, and religiophobia on the rise.

Read more and see more photos here.


Cooperation Circle: SYNC for Harmony 

Location: URI Multi-Region (worldwide)

Event Type: Meditation / Prayer / Ceremony

Ongoing millions of prayers together with meditations, self-growth practices and other subtle activities occur in every moment on our planet in a steady but chaotic, non-coherent stream. This phenomenon holds precious foci of/to WE-enlightenments. Today, this big human power is found scattered amongst individuals or in local groups without any non-local world coordination. Let us gather those prayers out of randomness into the regular, timed march formation. Let us head remotely together in an hourly rhythm for peace, and the commonality of a virtual “Life Synctuary”.

Let us launch the planetary “GLOBAL–Prayer Sync” and conform to Gaia’s Call: pray simultaneously. As for W.I.H.W. 2017, we plan to start to inform believers to tune their own familiar time of prayer and to get waves of 50.000 practitioners who pray simultaneously in remote togetherness.

It is easy. Let each person volunteer to move their own prayer or familiar spiritual activity to the first half hour UTC, once a day. Each person of faith wants to receive and radiate compassion and love. By sharing the process, she or he makes less than 2% subtle timing of his or her own prayer. So everyone can reach the simultaneity wave of globally-orchestrated prayers; a sizable number of prayers of all creeds.


Cooperation Circle: CARAVAN 

Location: URI Multi-Region (United States)

Event Type: Action / March / Art

Beyond Bridges is an art exhibition of 21 premier Arab, Persian and Jewish artists of Christian, Muslim and Jewish faith backgrounds focusing on what they hold in common. Held at Duke University Chapel and curated by CARAVAN, "Beyond Bridges" focuses on what "bridges" people make to one another, as well as what the three faiths of the artists hold in common across their different creeds and cultures. The 21 participating artists through Beyond Bridges are making the case for using that which we have in common as the foundation for the future of our world. The ultimate objective of the exhibition is for it to serve as an “encounter point”, encouraging and enabling new relationships to be made across religions and cultures.

The exhibition will be on display in Duke Chapel's main sanctuary (the nave) from February 5 through February 26, 2017. The exhibition is free and open to the public from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. daily. An opening panel and reception for the exhibition will be held at the Chapel on Sunday, February 5, at 2:00 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

 


Cooperation Circle: United Religions Initiative at the United Nations CC 

Location: URI Multi-Region (United States)

Event Type: Dance / Music / Celebration/ Arts

World Interfaith Harmony Week at the United Nations in New York, USA: World Interfaith Harmony Week will be observed with youth from URI North America coming to the United Nations for the Commission on Social Development. There will be an Interfaith discussion on Feb 2. Christians, Muslims, Jews, and Mormons will be involved, among others.      


 

Cooperation Circle: URI – URI South East Asia and Pacific Region

Location: South East Asia and Pacific, Australia, East Coburg

Event Type: Discussion

What does it mean to be a person of faith in Melbourne today? Join us for a respectful and illuminating discussion on how young people of different faith backgrounds experience life in Melbourne amidst a time of heightened media and public discourse about what it means to be an Australian in 2017.  Come participate in the conversation and share your perspectives on faith, spirituality and belonging in Australia today.

Facilitated by Moreland Together, a coalition of people committed to creating caring and inclusive communities for people of all identities and faiths, and the United Religions Imitative (URI), the world’s largest grassroots interfaith network dedicated to cultivating peace and justice.


Cooperation Circle: Interfaith Peace Building on Natural Resources Management

Location: South East Asia and Pacific, Cambodia, Kampong Speu Province

Event Type: Interfaith Discussion

All religions share their own religious perspective related to environmental care. We brought together representatives from many traditions to speak together on the topic. 

  • AshMath, representing the Muslim/Islam community from the Interfaith network in Kampot Province, said that the Cham ethnic group lives in Champa country presently, in southern Vietnam, and this ethnic group originally came from the Chvea-Java ethnic group from Indonesia. After losing their land to Vietnam, the Cham fled to live in Cambodia in about 1950.
  • Mr. Nob Sokha, representing the Christian faith, said that the Lord formed the earth and humans, and commanded humans to live and take care of all His creatures, and to love your neighbor as yourself.
  • Ven. ChoavSen, representing the Buddhist faith, said that the Buddha taught that we all are born from Nature and live by Nature. We have to use it properly to sustain human life on earth.
  • Mr. RaJu, representing the Hindu faith, said that everything around us is respected by Hindu followers, and that all creatures are a part of our being. If we care about nature, we care about ourselves.
Read more about this event and see more photos here.
 

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