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Friday, September 30, 2016 Interfaith Center at the Presidio

September- A Season of Peace

peace dove with ICP logoA SEASON OF PEACE. For several years now, the days between September 11 and September 21 have been observed by many as the 11 Days of Global Unity. Beginning on the anniversary of the attacks on the Twin Towers in New York, a day that has become the National Day of Service, and stretching through the International Day of Peace, these days have become a time for people to dedicate themselves to acts of compassion, service, and peacemaking.

The first International Day of Peace was first observed at the United Nations Headquarters on September 21, 1982. In 2002, a General Assembly resolution, fixed Peace Day each year on the 21st. The theme for this year is "Building Blocks of Peace."

The annual Peace in the Park Festival takes place on September 17th (see below). In the South Bay, the Silicon Valley Interreligious Council is encouraging participation in the Compassion Games- a cooperative competition among individuals and groups to take compassionate actions for others, for the earth, and even for oneself- during these days. In Palo Alto, an Interfaith March for Peace and Picnic will be celebrated on September 11. Worldwide, people are taking a minute of silence at noon on September 21 wherever they are. Check our calendar listings for other opportunities to join in making peace during this time, get together with your friends and community, or take part in the URI #TangibleHope campaign!.

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Pacifica InstituteAGAINST EXTREMISM. Fatih Ates, Director of the San Francisco and East Bay branches of Pacifica Institute (they share offices in the Presidio Chapel with ICP and the San Francisco Interfaith Council) will speak on Saturday, September 3, at 1:00 pm at the Richmond/Senator Milton Marks branch of the San Francisco Public Library, 351 9th Ave San Francisco. He will discuss the pillars of Islam, the Koran's teachings of peace, and the importance of interfaith dialogue. The event is co-sponsored by the Interfaith Center at the Presidio.

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Peace in the ParkPEACE IN THE PARK FESTIVAL brings together the diverse San Francisco and surrounding communities to unplug and explore activities of peace and happiness in a fun, inspiring and healthy atmosphere. With a vision of facilitating positive change globally, the festival unites world-renowned peace leaders, yogis, scientists and experts in the field of neuroscience, meditation teachers, performers and artists. Hear from global thought leaders, authors and experts. Walk away with tools on how to integrate peace. Enjoy a day of peaceful movement, meditation and conscious cuisine. We welcome yogis & kale lovers of all ages. Channel your creativity. Learn about community and global peace initiatives.

Saturday, September 17th, from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm, the 4th annual festival will feature world music and visual artists; tai chi, hatha yoga; life-changer seminars, arts, crafts, exhibits by local non-profits and meditation experience. At the majestic Bandshell of Golden Gate Park, this event will demonstrate how to nurture peace and happiness even while living in a fast-paced urban environment. Presenters will include Dr. Jim Doty of the Stanford Center for Compassion and Altruism Research, Diane Tillman, creator of Living Values for Children, and San Francisco Supervisor London Breed.

The festival is offered free of charge by a coalition including Brahma Kumaris, SF Parks Alliance, Institute of Noetic Sciences, United Religions Initiative, and many more. More information at www.PeaceInTheParkSF.org. Watch a 1-minute video at YouTube.

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URI BEGINS #TangibleHope CAMPAIGN. What are you and your community doing that gives you hope for the future? All too often those acts of compassion, service, and gratitude that give us hope are hidden away and don't get the attention they deserve. That's why the United Religions Initiative is inviting you (whether you are affiliated with the URI or not) to share written or audivisual stories about what is happening in your part of the world and to use the hashtag #TangibleHope. Wherever you may be in social media, be it on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and beyond, using the tag #TangibleHope will help get the word out and make all our efforts more visible. (If you're not sure how to use a hashtag, check out this video tutorial.).

Gratitude for what we see around us, Awareness of hopeful actions in our communities, and an inspiration for yet more Action — that's what #TangibleHope enables. To find out more, see the Introduction and 3 Easy Steps messages from URI. Questions? contact Anissa at anissa@uri.org.

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ELECTION RULES FOR CONGREGATIONS. As we approach the Fall elections, you may be wondering how and if your congregation can be involved in advocacy. Interfaith Power & Light is sponsoring a free Webinar to learn how your congregation can appropriately and legally, as a tax-exempt nonprofit corporation, engage in the upcoming elections. IPL has online resources to help you do this, but this Webinar will be led by an attorney and expert on Nonprofit advocacy with Alliance for Justice. The training will provide a general overview of permissible activities and specifics about what your congregation can and cannot do legally as a tax-exempt nonprofit. The free Webinar takes place on Thursday, September 8 at noon Pacific Time; sign up here.

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AUGUST WAS MUSLIM APPRECIATION MONTH On Monday, August 1, the California State Assembly voted to approve House Resolution 59, officially declaring the month of August as “Muslim Appreciation and Awareness Month.” The resolution, introduced by Assemblymember Bill Quirk of Hayward, "respectfully acknowledges the rich history and guiding virtues of Muslim Americans, and commends Muslim communities in California for the lasting positive impact they have made, and continue to make, toward the advancement of the state and the nation…" On August 16, Mayor Sam Liccardo and Council Member Ash Kalra recognized “Muslim American Appreciation Month” in the City of San José. The California Assembly has previously issued similar proclamations of Awareness and Appreciation months for the Hindu and Sikh communities that are part of our diverse California population.

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Diwali stampDIWALI STAMP. The United States Postal Service announced last month that a new "forever" stamp commemorating the joyous Hindu festival of Diwali will be issued on Wednesday, October 5, with a dedication ceremony at the Consulate General of India in New York. Diwali celebrates the triumph of good over evil. Spanning five days each autumn, it is considered by some to be the start of the new year. The stamp design is a photograph featuring a traditional diya oil lamp beautifully lit, sitting on a sparkling gold background. Diya lamps are usually made from clay with cotton wicks dipped in a clarified butter known as “ghee” or in vegetable oils. Read more.

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THE SPIRITUALITY OF PHILANTHROPY. “Shrouds Have No Pockets,” a seminar on how to inspire philanthropy and giving within community organizations, will be offered September 15, 2016 at the John Muir Medical Center, 1601 Ygnacio Valley Rd, Walnut Creek in the Ball Auditorium. The program begins with a complimentary breakfast at 7:30, followed by the presentation from 8:00 - 9:30 am. Presenters will include Michael G. Crvarich, Vice President – Legacy & Major Gifts at John Muir Health Foundation and April Bell, Professional Videographer, John Muir Health Foundation Tree of Life Legacies. This program is designed to explore Legacy Storytelling as a gateway for discovering core values that inspire philanthropy and a Legacy of Giving within the organizations you serve. Attendees will walk away with a framework for leading others through the Legacy Storytelling Process consistent with your organization’s particular spiritual and faith traditions in a “retreat like” environment. Co-Sponsored by: Interfaith Council of Contra Costa County. Please RSVP by Sept. 8th to Mary David at (925) 941-2134 or mary.david@johnmuirhealth.com

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Presidio ChapelDOCENT TOURS OF PRESIDIO CHAPEL. The weekly Open House/Docent Tours at the Presidio Chapel on Sundays from 11:00 am to 1:30 pm have proven quite popular. An average of 10 people come each week to view the 33' fresco painted by Victor Arnautoff, a protege of Diego Rivera, and the stained glass windows created by Willemina Ogterop, the first woman stained glass artist west of the Mississippi to be inducted into the Stained Glass Artists Guild. Comments have praised the Chapel and the docent, Daniel Johnson. The open house is listed on the Presidio Trust's website with other guided tours. Learn more about the Presidio Chapel here and then plan to visit us and take a tour.

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NOTES & QUOTES: Congratulations to URI Founder and President Bishop William Swing on his 80th birthday last month...We were saddened to learn of the death of “Woody” Trautman, a long-time interfaith activist in Ohio who, with his wife Judy Trautman was a cherished member of the North American Interfaith Alliance (NAIN)..."The greatest thing that makes conflict stop is relationship” - Rev. Bitrus Dangiwa, Interfaith Meditation Center.

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SEND US YOUR NEWS! We at Bay Area Interfaith Connect make every effort to include upcoming interfaith events in our monthly calendar (which is always available on our website). Please be sure to send information about your upcoming events to calendar@interfaith-presidio.org. We'd also like to share what happened at your events or celebrations with the wider interfaith community. Got a story you'd like to share? Pictures from that latest gathering? Send them along and let everyone know what's happening!


BAY AREA INTERFAITH CONNECT is sent each month to nearly 2,000 subscribers, and is available online at the Interfaith Center at the Presidio website.

To Subscribe: If you do not receive the monthly updates and would like to do so, simply write to info@interfaith-presidio.org. Please include your name, and, if you are willing, your street address and phone will help us to keep you up to date on interfaith activities.

To Unsubscribe: If you wish to unsubscribe you can do so by writing info@interfaith-presidio.org and letting us know. Thank you.

About the Editor: D. Andrew Kille is director of Interfaith Space in San Jose, working to develop and strengthen interfaith relations throughout the Bay Area. Send your calendar items, comments and suggestions to calendar@interfaith-presidio.org. We try to keep the ICP Update and Calendar as current as we can, but if you want your item included in the monthly newsletter, it needs to be in our hands a week before the end of the month.


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In the Bay Area Interfaith Connect Archives you will find editorials from BAIC beginning with January of 2007, as well as longer articles on issues of interest for interfaith work..

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At the Presidio Chapel
Map and directions to the Presidio’s Main Post Chapel

Presidio Chapel Website

Open House and Docent Tours
Sundays, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
Tour the Chapel building, see the murals, stained glass windows and other features of this historic building.



On the Interfaith Center website at www.interfaith-presidio.org, find resources and information about the ongoing work of ICP. Take a look at our major projects, including the Interfaith Design Competition, the Lost and Endangered Religions Project, the McDonald Windows, and Spiritual Resources interviews.

You can also find a wealth of interfaith links, including books, calendars, Podcasts and more on the Interfaith Resources Page.


Interfaith Center at the PresidioBay Area Interfaith Connect is a monthly newsletter and calendar of interfaith events published by the Interfaith Center at the Presidio. The Center is a regional interfaith hub organization, linking interreligious groups around the Bay, across the nation, and around the world. ICP was incorporated in September 1995 "to welcome, serve, and celebrate the diverse spiritual wisdom and faith traditions of the Bay Area." The Center is a Cooperation Circle of the United Religions Initiative, networked with hundreds of interfaith communities around the world who share a common commitment: ...to promote daily, enduring interfaith cooperation, to end religiously motivated violence, and to create cultures of peace, justice, and healing for the Earth and all living beings.

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Bay Area Interreligious Calendar

We invite you to share programs and exhibits sponsored by Bay Area faith and interfaith groups for the public, provided only that they show respect for traditions other than their own and are not primarily aimed at converting people. We try to keep the ICP Update and Calendar as current as we can, but if you want your item included in the monthly newsletter, it needs to be in our hands a week before the end of the month. Send items to calendar@interfaith-presidio.org. National and international interfaith events that might be of interest to local individuals will be posted under "Special Opportunities," along with useful interfaith resources.

Through the month events are added to this calendar; the current version can be found www.interfaith-presidio.org. Look for the marker New Item! Events disappear within a day or two after they happen. To add or cancel your subscription to Bay Area Interfaith Connect, contact info@interfaith-presidio.org.

The new graphic to the right is inspired by the ICP linked ring logo. Each ring remains whole and maintains its integrity; only the white ribbon holds them together. Each of our religious traditions remains unique; it is the commitment to working together that creates the bond.


WHEN: Sunday, October 2, 2016, 1:00 pm
WHERE: Burgess Park, 701 Laurel St, Menlo Park, CA 94025. Sponsored walk.
Please join in again for this year’s Crop Hunger Walk. Last year, we raised over 22,000 dollars to fight hunger. Thank you! Your efforts and participation have made a huge difference around the world and here on the Peninsula in places where it’s mattered most. Let’s go for a new record this year with the event on October 2nd.

REGISTER RIGHT NOW by going to cropwalk2016.com to “join” a team or “start” a team!

     ...IN OAKLAND

Shanti: A Journey of Peace
WHEN: Saturday, October 1, 2016, 3:00 pm
WHERE: Oakland Mormon Temple, 4780 Lincoln Avenue, Oakland. $40- $80.
A spectacular multi-media musical production that fuses western choral and orchestral music with Indian musical and dance elements. Faculty, students, staff, alumni, and friends of the GTU can enter the promotional code "GTU" to get a 40% discount off list prices. Proceeds from the performance will benefit Hindu Studies programs at GTU's Center for Dharma Studies.

Info and tickets at GTU website.

New Item! The Art of Building Legacy
WHEN: Saturday, November 5, 2016, 6:00 - 11:00 pm
WHERE: Scott's Seafood Pavilion, 2 Broadway, Oakland. $250+.
AHC's The Art of Building Legacy Gala will celebrate a 27 years of life-enriching work in Oakland communities, transforming the lives of families, children and youth. The evening will commence with a cocktail hour and silent auction, followed by a sit down dinner with youth speakers and a key note address by Antwan Wilson, Superintendent of Oakland Unified School District, and will end in dancing with The King Cosby Band.

More info and tickets: www.ahc-oakland.org/gala.


Radical Christian Life with Sister Joan Chittister
WHEN: Saturday, October 1, 2016, 1:00 - 2:30 pm
WHERE: Christ the King Parish, 199 Brandon Road, Pleasant Hill, CA 94523. $45 advance; $55 on site.
Hesed Community invites individuals of all ages and denominations to listen to Sister Joan Chittister speak on how to live a contemplative life in the modern world. Sr. Joan Chittister offers a clear voice that bridges across all religions and has been passionately advocating for human rights, women’s issues, church renewal, and overall peace for 40 years. She is a best-selling author of more than 50 books and has written over 700 articles.

Info: Mary Desmond (510) 334-1420; maryjdes@gmail.com.
Tickets at hesedcommunity.brownpapertickets.com or hesedcommunity.org/.


WinterFaith Shelter Walk 2016
WHEN: Sunday, October 30, 2016, 1:30 pm
WHERE: Lake Merced in San Francisco (meet at Parking Circle at intersection of Lake Merced and Sunset Blvds). Fundraiser walk.
Walk proceeds benefit the Interfaith Winter Shelter - Register and/or Donate Today! To register and/or donate please visit: winterfaithshelterwalk.dojiggy.com.


Annual Inspiration Dinner: Peter Coyote
WHEN: Friday, October 7, 2016, 7:00 pm
WHERE: Embassy Suites Hotel, 101 McInnis Parkway, San Rafael, CA 94903. $75 per person.
This year we are celebrating the life and work of Peter Coyote, actor, Zen priest, activist, writer, community leader and cultural innovator. A panel of people will illuminate Peter’s model as a Zen practitioner and priest, Peter’s career as an actor, Peter’s work as a writer, and, last, Peter’s contributions to the counter-culture movement of the 60’s and 70’s.

More information and registration at ias.org/annualdinner/.


The Ways of Compassion
WHEN: Thursday, October 13, 2016, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
WHERE: Chung Tai Zen Center, 750 E. Arques Avenue, Sunnyvale, CA 94085. Free event.
Abbot Jian Hu Shi will speak on the various methods in Buddhism to help us practice unconditioned compassion, to cope with people who have hurt us, and to develop patience and tolerance. We will then open the conversation for others to share ways, anecdotes, contemplation, and meditations from their respective traditions so we can learn from each other. RSVP to rsvp@sivicouncil.org


BAY AREA INTERFAITH CONNECT ARCHIVE. Some of the items we share each month are not time-limited, but listing them all in each issue becomes too much. We have now created an links page with material from back issues, especially books, web links, and long-term opportunities. Items from past issues are now available on the ICP website in our Interfaith Links Library.

THE WISDOM OF OUR ELDERS, a CBS Interfaith Special, features interviews with three faith leaders about how they became who they are today and what they think about the current state of religious affairs in the U.S. and throughout the world. CBS Television Network on Sunday, Sept. 18 (check local listings). Featured are Joan D. Chittister, O.S.B., a passionate advocate for peace, justice and human rights; Rev. Dr. James A. Forbes, Jr., Senior Minister Emeritus of The Riverside Church; and Rev. Dr. Joan Brown Campbell, the first woman to serve as the General Secretary of the National Council of Churches. Following the Sept. 18th air date, this program may be viewed again at www.cbsnews.com/religion-and-culture.

INTERFAITH EDUCATION RESOURCES. The Scarboro Missions Interfaith Department continues to build its remarkable online resource center for interfaith relationships. Among the items available are Reflective Structured Dialogue: A Dialogical Guide to Peace-building and Multifaith Education Resources for Theological Schools. There's much more; take a look at their collection of interfaith curriculum resources.

DEFUSING HATE GUIDE The US Holocaust Memorial Museum has worked with fellow Rachel Brown to produce Defusing Hate: A Strategic Guide to Counteract Dangerous Speech. Informed by history and drawing from a range of disciplines—from political science to communications, from marketing to neuropsychology—the guide offers activists, religious and civil society leaders, and their supporters the strategies and tools they need to prevent hate speech that has the potential to influence people to accept, condone, or commit violence against targeted groups. It's available as a free download.

COMPASSION BOOK CLUB. The Charter for Compassion has a Compassion Book Club inspired by and built around Karen Armstrong’s Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life. They are hoping to energize and broaden the Compassionate Book Club by inviting members to join in an All-Charter-Book-Read. You are invited to read the books individually or with a group, and then to join an online discussion with the author. Upcoming discussions include September 17, 2016, 9:00 am PDT: The Reunited States of America: How We Can Bridge the Partisan Divide by Mark Gerzon [register]; and October 22, 2016, 9:00 am PDT: Great Tide Rising by Kathleen Dean Moore [register].




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