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Monday, January 26, 2015 Interfaith Center at the Presidio


January- Looking Back; Looking Forward


Happy 2015!

The days marking the end of the old year and the coming of the new are often a time for remembering what the past year brought our way. What kind of a year was it for the Interfaith Center at the Presidio and the world of interfaith relationships?

January saw the final celebrations of the "Year of Vivekenanda," honoring the 150th Anniversary of the honored Indian teacher who captured the imagination of the first Parliament of the World's Religions in 1893... The first week of February marked World Interfaith Harmony Week, celebrated in several ways around the Bay Area and the world... In March, we pondered whether dialogue "works," and the San Francisco Unit of the Girl Scouts held a multi-religious awards celebration in the ICP chapel...April brought a visit from the students of the InterFaith Tour, traveling from France around the world to experience interfaith work. ICP was instrumental in helping them meet local leaders. Videos of their trip are on YouTube... In May, the Chapel was open to the public as part of Memorial Day observances at the Presidio... In June, at the Annual Meeting, the role of sponsoring organizations was changed to allow ICP to carry out its mission more effectively. ICP also hosted the Global Council and Staff of the URI (United Religions Initiative) for their welcoming ceremony in the Chapel...

The horrific battles that broke out in July between Israel and Gaza occasioned calls for peace and reconciliation from many interreligious groups...August featured the "Peace in the Park" celebration in Golden Gate Park; ICP and the URI shared booth space and conversation with folks who dropped by. NAINConnect 2014 met in Detroit, bringing interfaith leaders together from North American Interfaith Network...To observe the International Day of Peace in September, ICP sponsored two showings of the Not In Our Town film, "Waking in Oak Creek"...October was "Hindu-American Awareness and Appreciation Month" in California for the second year, and a set of high-resolution photos of the ICP McDonald Windows collection went on display in Aachen, Germany as part of the celebration of the 1,200th anniversary of the death of Charlemagne...For Veterans Day in November, ICP hosted an interfaith "Service of Unity and Peace" in the Chapel that featured leaders from Buddhist, Christian, Jewish, Hindu and Muslim traditions...The chapel was open again to all for meditation and prayer on National Wreaths Across America Day and a Christmas Eve Service in December.

For more details on any of these stories (and many more), take a look at the archives for the Bay Area Interfaith Connect on the ICP website.

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Parliament of the World's ReligionsPARLIAMENT 2015 IN SALT LAKE CITY. Looking to the year ahead, one of the major events of 2015 is sure to be the Parliament of the World's Religions gathering in Salt Lake City October 15 – 19, 2015. Reclaiming the Heart of Our Humanity is the theme. Three Critical Issues for 2015 will be: Climate Change and Care for Creation; War, Violence, and Hate Speech; and The Widening Wealth Gap and Wasteful Consumption. Special focus will be made on Women, Indigenous Communities, and Youth.

Two of the keynote speakers for the Parliament will be His Holiness The Dalai Lama and Karen Armstrong, religion author and founder of the Charter for Compassion.

The Parliament is now accepting proposals for presentations. Registration is already available. For an overview of the conference, registration, and links for proposing sessions, exhibition space, and sponsorship information (coming soon), go to the Parliament website.

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Be|Art|Now: ACTIVISTS, ARTISTS & PROGRESSIVE PEOPLE OF FAITH. Be|Art|Now is an experiential conference that explores the intersections between art, spirit, and social change through presentations, lectures, workshops, and immersive activities with leaders in arts and activism from the Bay Area and beyond. Featured presenters include musician Michael Franti, pastor and former professional dancer Adriene Thorne, hip hop artist and police officer Jinho “The Piper” Ferreira, and sculptor Tim Holmes. The Pacific School of Religion, Berkeley, CA - January 29-31, 2015. For more information and to register, visit the website at www.psr.edu/beartnow.

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World Interfaith Harmony WeekWORLD INTERFAITH HARMONY WEEK FEBRUARY 1-7. Every year the first week of February has been designated by the United Nations since 2010 as a week to showcase and celebrate the ongoing work of interreligious harmony and peacemaking. Groups and individuals are encouraged to sponsor events during this week and to share the information on the World Interfaith Harmony Week website.

This year, the Silicon Valley Interreligious Council (SiVIC), a URI Cooperation Circle, is partnering with the Compassion Games' Interfaith League to bring the UN World Interfaith Harmony Week Coopetition to life. SiVIC is participating in the Compassion Games and challenges all URI CC's to join them to be the most compassionate URI Cooperation Circle...... Game On!

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"THE POPE'S RABBI." Rabbi Abraham Skorka is the rabbi of the Jewish community Benei Tikva in Buenos Aires. With then Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Jorge Mario Bergoglio (now Pope Francis), Rabbi Skorka held a series of inter-religious conversations on topics such as God, fundamentalism, atheists, death, holocaust, homosexuality, and capitalism. Most recently Rabbi Skorka accompanied Pope Francis and Omar Abboud (a leader of Argentina’s Muslim community) to Jordan, the West bank, and Israel. Rabbi Skorka will be speaking at Santa Clara Unversity on Tuesday, February 10, 2015, at 4:00 pm. Respondents will include Bishop Patrick McGrath (Diocese of San Jose) and Rabbi Dana Magat (Temple Emanu-El), who will reflect on their longtime friendship and its impact on local Catholic-Jewish relations. The event is co-sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley Interreligious Council, and the Diocese of San Jose. RSVP required at www.scu.edu/ic/bannan

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NOTES & QUOTES: Blessings for the New Year! We'll be back next month.

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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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BAIC ARCHIVES

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: www.presidiochapel.org

Contact the ICP office for information on when the chapel is open for tours.

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INTERFAITH RESOURCES

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.

ABOUT THE INTERFAITH CENTER AT THE PRESIDIO

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
2015

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.

     ...IN BERKELEY
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EARL LECTURES & CONFERENCE  
New Item! Be|Art|Now
WHEN: Thursday- Sunday, January 29-31, 2015
WHERE: Pacific School of Religion, 1798 Scenic Avenue, Berkeley. $199 full-time registration; lower rates for others.
Be|Art|Now, the 112th Earl Lectures and Leadership Conference, brings you into conversation and reflection with theologians, artists, communities, and art itself. Performances, exhibits, worship space, public arts, and liturgies invite you to step inside revolutionary spaces where arts are transforming the world, and to explore innovative ways to integrate art into your vocation and spiritual life.

Details and registration at www.psr.edu/beartnow.

     ...IN PALO ALTO
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LUNCH GATHERING  
Palo Alto Faith Leaders
WHEN: Wednesday, February 4, 2015, noon
WHERE: Palo Alto V.A. Hospital, 3801 Miranda Avenue, Palo Alto.
The primary purpose of our gatherings is social, an opportunity to build our relationships and connections with each other so that we can better serve this great community. Feel free to bring news and fliers of events that your faith community is hosting or about community issues that we might wish to know about. Contact: Eileen Altman, eileen@fccpa.org

     ...SPECIAL OPPORTUNITIES
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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.

DEILY. A new website went online in December, "dedicated to sharing and explaining the world’s religious content - including sacred texts, prayers, sermons, lectures & teachings." The creative group behind the site hope that shared exploration of religious traditions will "connect us to our faith, our understanding, and ultimately to one another in a manner that benefits the common good." Take a look and see how they're doing at www.deily.org/.

GOLDEN RULE WORKSHOP. Scarboro Missions is offering a do-it-yourself workshop and group discussion experience in which participants are invited to reflect from the perspective of a universal moral principle - the Golden Rule - in its many and various expressions across the world's religions. This workshop has been tested in a number of environments and has consistently generated great enthusiasm, reflection and discussion. Any group or individual who decides to sponsor it can expect rich and varied responses. To view or download this workshop free of charge, go to www.scarboromissions.ca/Golden_rule/workshop_guidelines.php

HEALTH CARE. The California Council of Churches, through its new Navigator grant with Covered CA is seeking congregations of all faiths to serve as enrollment sites for the next open and special enrollment periods to sign people up for health insurance from November 2014 to June 2015. Faith communities should recruit volunteers who will be trained, certified, fingerprinted and background checked, have accessible meeting spaces and parking, have password protected computer and internet access and be willing to accommodate education and enrollment store fronts during weeknights and on the weekends. Faith communities can, at their discretion, invite local providers to do health screenings and have a community health fair. For more information, contact: Marijke Fakasiieiki, California Council of Churches Certified Educator and Enroller Covered CA, (510) 529-5011 or marijke@calchurches.org.

VOLUNTEERS SOUGHT. The Fig Tree Northern CA/NV will be launching soon as a seedling offshoot of The Fig Tree in Spokane, WA, which has covered stories of faith in action in the inland northwest for 30 years. The goal is to link people of faith in this region in an online newsmagazine format through Wordpress and Facebook with news stories of local people making a difference, interfaith and ecumenical stories from regional, national and international sources, a directory of faith communities and community agencies, regional calendar listings, classified and regular ads. Volunteers are needed to help them get started as a non-profit: to serve on the board, to write articles, to help with graphic design and advertising, to help with layout and editing, to compile calendar listings and classifieds for a bartering type network, to write grants, etc. . . If you have any of these skills and would like to contribute to wider interfaith networking for this region, please contact: Marijke Fakasiieiki, editor, The Fig Tree Northern CA/NV, (510) 529-5011, mfakasiieiki@gmail.com.

BIG I CONFERENCE. The 2015 "Big I Conference" (the "I" stands for Interfaith, Interspiritual, Integral, and Independent) will be held at the Mercy Center in Burlingame February 6-8, 2015. The theme is "Ministering for the Earth: tending the heart of the planet." The intent of the conference is to bring together scholars and spiritual people to explore through dialogue and practices and scholarly publication, the evolution of human spirituality through the inclusive theology and consciousness of interfaith, interspirituality and integral spirituality and meeting the emerging spiritually independent (spiritual-but-not-religious) community. You can learn more at bigiconference.org/


 

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