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Monday, February 27, 2017 Interfaith Center at the Presidio

February- Responding

ICP logo

The Interfaith Center at the Presidio links the power of interreligious cooperation by welcoming, serving, and celebrating the diverse wisdom and faith traditions of the Bay Area.

The past ten days have been a whirlwind of activity as a new administration began with the inauguration of Donald Trump on January 20. The next day millions of people turned out in cities not only across the nation but around the world, calling on these new leaders to respect the concerns of women, minorities, immigrants and refugees and to find a way to bring a sharply divided nation together after a brutal and wearing election season.

Instead, a series of executive orders was issued from the White House that reaffirmed Trump's campaign promises and instituted bans (perhaps temporary) against immigrants and refugees in language that thinly concealed a religious basis against Muslims. Interfaith groups from across the country and around the Bay responded quickly with statements opposing the executive actions, and legal proceedings have been filed against them. It is clear, however, that the tone that has been set by the new administration is going to require an ongoing response from the power of interreligious cooperation.

ICP is responding in several ways. We joined with faith-based and secular groups in a statement, "Know Your Neighbor: Multifaith Encounters Coalition Statement and Call to Action on Immigration Executive Orders." We were part of a conference call among interfaith leaders both local and national to discover what was being planned by local groups and how to communicate and coordinate efforts as we go forward. We are convening a meeting of the executive leaders of Bay Area Interfaith groups (and beyond, with leaders from URI). We are also retooling our calendar and newsletter systems to enable better linkages for our shared work.

Other statements are below. See the calendar below for upcoming events and activities; be alert for a new kind of newsletter coming your way, and be sure to check the Bay Area Interfaith Connect page regularly for updates.

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link handsFAMILY FUN AT ICP. The Presidio Chapel rang with the sounds of music and rhythm shakers as about 15 people, adults and children, joined the first Family Fun Day. Marla Kolman Antebi led in making peace flags and the shakers, and long-time ICP friend Mark Denni accompanied a sing-along. Interfaith cooperation begins young! Bring your children and your neighbors' children to join us 2:00 - 4:00 pm, February 26, March 26, and April 30. The Presidio Chapel is at 130 Fisher Loop (above the Golden Gate Club) [map].

making banners   singalong   banners

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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. The TriCities Interfaith Council in Fremont is planning a celebration on Saturday, February 4th, from 1:00 - 3:30 pm with participants from over 10 Faith Groups; booths with information on each faith; small circle conversations; breads of many cultures and refreshments at Niles Discovery Church 36600 Niles Blvd. Fremont. Details are here.

The Parliament of the World's Religions is offering a series of live-video seminars on on topics of Peace, Chimate Change, Women's Issues, and the Standing Rock effort during this week. See details on their website.

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The Interfaith ObserverTHE INTERFAITH OBSERVER. (TIO) is an independent internet journal about all things interfaith. TIO was relaunched from a new website this September. Each month TIO goes to more than 12,000 faith and interfaith leaders, including about 2,300 outside the U.S. More than 350 writers have contributed articles. Download back issues. Subscribe for free.

The theme for January was "Empowerment," including these articles:

Featured Video: Religious Diversity Training Video for NYPD Officers

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NOTES & QUOTES: "Speaking out against anti-Muslim bigotry sits at the core of what it means for me to be a Christian. I find a radical message of solidarity, love and inclusion essential to Christianity and I cannot think of anything more Christ-like than standing with those who are being persecuted in our society." - Kate Chance..."Many things have changed over the last 20 years, but one of the most obvious among my conversation partners is that efforts at inter-religious understanding have gradually re-focused onto what might be called inter-communal understanding and with it dialogue about the way communal identities are negotiated in the realm of politics and economics." - Robert Hunt...


Support ICP

If you find BAIC interesting and useful; if you support the need for a regional interfaith presence and connections in the Bay Area, please support the work of the Interfaith Center at the Presidio with a donation of $5, $18, $50, $501, or whatever you feel is appropriate for your situation. You can donate online via PayPal or send us a check. Full information is available on the ICP website.

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!

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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

Interfaith Book Study Group
First Wednesday of the Month, 7:00 pm
An interfaith dialogue group open to followers of any faith and religion. The main goal of the group is to deepen relationship among the members and increase respect for others, thereby increasing appreciation of religious and humanitarian values. We are currently reading A History of God by Karen Armstrong.

Family Fun Group
Last Sunday of the Month, 2:00 - 4:00 pm
Family friendly interfaith activities including music and art in a fun and friendly atmosphere. People of all ages, backgrounds, and beliefs are welcome.



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.


Befriending the Unknown and Embracing Uncertainty: Multi-Faith Perspectives
WHEN: Sunday, March 5, 2017, 7:00 - 9:30 pm
WHERE: Chochmat HaLev, 2215 Prince St., Berkeley. Donations accepted.
Since the election, many of us have been in a state of heightened anxiety. So much is unknown and fear is a common response to uncertainty. This gathering will provide an opportunity to explore spiritual wisdom teachings to help us deepen in faith and find the necessary courage and resilience to thrive during these uncertain and unpredictable times. More information.

Speakers: Rev. Matthew Fox is a spiritual theologian who has written over 33 books on spirituality and culture, and has been consciously reinventing education to make it more possible to teach wisdom and not just knowledge. Estelle Frankel is a practicing psychotherapist, spiritual advisor and seasoned teacher of Jewish mysticism who blends the healing wisdom and spiritual practices of Kabbalah with depth psychology. Shaykh Yassir Chadly served as imam (spiritual leader) of the Masjid Al Iman mosque in Oakland from 1991 - 2016 . He has lectured extensively on Islam, Sufism and Religious tolerance and is an adjunct professor at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley.


Lunch and Learn
WHEN: Friday, March 3, 2017, 12:00 noon
WHERE: St. Isadore's Catholic Church, 440 La Gonda Way, Danville. Free event.
Bring a brown bag lunch. Beverages and cookies will be provided. We will have a presentation on the work of the host Center or Congregation at Noon. Contact is Elby Salazar (925) 548-1272 and elbyagapeangel99@yahoo.com


Lunch and Learn
WHEN: Friday, April 7, 2017, 12:00 noon
WHERE: Lafayette Orinda Presbyterian Church. 49 Knox Dr., Lafayette. Free event.
Bring a brown bag lunch. Beverages and cookies will be provided. We will have a presentation on the work of the host Center or Congregation at Noon. Contact Terry Clark (818) 590-8820 and terrance.clark08@gmail.com.

     ...IN OAKLAND

Series on Islam
WHEN: Sundays, February 5, 12, 19, 26, 11:30 am
WHERE: St. John's Episcopal Church, 1707 Gouldin Road, Oakland. Free event.
On the four Sundays in February, St. John’s Adult Education program will be hosting a 4 part series on Islam. The four sessions will include discussions on the basic tenets of Islam, the sects of Islam, the Quran, the similarities between Islam and Christianity, and the issues and challenges that Muslims and Christians have both with each other and in common.

  • Introduction to Islam- 11:30 a.m. on Sunday, February 5
  • The Qur’an- 11:30 a.m. on Sunday, February 12
  • Christianity/Islam Commonalities- 11:30 a.m. on Sunday, February 19
  • Interfaith Dialogue- 11:30 a.m. on Sunday, February 26


Lunch and Learn
WHEN: Friday, May 5, 2017, 12:00 noon
WHERE: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Institute of Religion, 300 Golf Club Road, Pleasant Hill. Free event.
Bring a brown bag lunch. Beverages and cookies will be provided. We will have a presentation on the work of the host Center or Congregation at Noon. Contacts Stuart or Evelyn Candland: (925) 922-1884. Plenty of parking behind.


Family Fun Group
WHEN: Last Sunday of the Month, 2:00 - 4:00 pm
WHERE: Presidio Chapel, 130 Fisher Loop, Presidio, San Francisco. Free event.
Family-friendly interfaith activities including music and art in a fun and friendly atmosphere. People of all ages, backgrounds, and beliefs are welcome. Please join us. February 26, March 26, April 30.

Update! Scriptural Reasoning
WHEN: Wednesday, March 8, 2017, 7:00 pm (usually first Wednesday)
WHERE: Presidio Chapel, 130 Fisher Loop, Presidio, San Francisco. Free event.
Interfaith Discussion Group at Presidio Chapel is an interfaith dialogue group open to followers of any faith and religion. The main goal of the group is to deepen relationship among the members and increase respect for others, thereby increasing appreciation of religious and humanitarian values. The group meets once a month to discuss sections from pre-selected book in the form of table discussions.

Scriptural Reasoning: Reflecting Together on Sacred Texts. The University of Cambridge offers this tool for interfaith dialogue whereby people of different faiths come together to read and reflect on their scriptures. Unlike some forms of interfaith engagement, it is not about seeking agreement but rather exploring the texts and their possible interpretations across faith boundaries, and learning to ‘disagree better’. The result is often a deeper understanding of others' and one’s own scriptures, as well as the development of strong bonds across faith communities. SR is now practiced globally, including in places affected by religion-related tensions and conflict.


Save the Date! Circles of Light Gala
WHEN: Saturday, March 25, 2017, 6:00 pm
WHERE: Ritz Carlton Hotel, 600 Stockton St., San Francisco. Benefit for URI.
Cocktail or festive attire. For more information or to sponsor a table, please call Diana Conan at (415) 762-2723 or send an email to events@uri.org.

Registration and details available here.


New Event! "Current Challenges for Interfaith Activists" Dr. Frank Kaufmann
Saturday, February 25, 2017
WHERE: Bay Area Family Church, 2305 Washington Ave., San Leandro. $5 suggested donation.
Dr. Frank Kaufmann is editor-in-chief and project leader of New World Encyclopedia, founder of the Values in Knowledge Foundation, director of the Inter-Religious Federation for World Peace (IRFWP), and was editor-in-chief of the scholarly journal Dialogue and Alliance. He teaches World Religions, Church History, Religion and Conflict Resolution, and other courses in the New York area and internationally, and enjoys a vigorous public speaking schedule on peace and conflict resolution.

Dr. Kaufmann has worked in religion and conflict resolution for 40 years, at times in physical danger in violent environments. His missions have taken him to areas of conflict, including Israel, Palestine, Croatia, the Eritrea – Ethiopia border, India, Kashmir, revolutionary centers in the Philippines, the Arabian Gulf, and Sri Lanka.
For more information call (510) 483-4712 or email bafcoffice@gmail.com.


Interfaith Series at B'nai Tikvah
WHEN: Sunday, February 26, 2017, 3:00 pm
WHERE: B'nai Tikvah, 25 Hillcroft Way, Walnut Creek. Free event.
This series will include speakers from different faith traditions who will come and speak about the history, beliefs and traditions that make them each unique. Then there will be time for questions and answers. This series is cosponsored by B'nai Tikvah and the Interfaith Council of Contra Costa County. Look on the website for specific speakers.

  • Sunday, Feb. 26th - 3:00 pm
  • Monday, March 20th - 7:00 pm
  • Sunday, April 23rd - 3:00 pm
  • Monday, May 15th - 7:00 pm
  • Sunday, June 25th - 3:00 pm


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.

EARL LECTURES AND BOSWELL LECTURE. Under the theme of “Borders and Identity,” the Earl Lectures presented in partnership with our Center for LGBTQ and Gender Studies in Religion‘s Boswell Lecture, will explore how migration across all kinds of borders—both physical and metaphorical—is reshaping our understanding of identity across boundaries of race, culture, religion, gender identity, and nationality. Within the first 100 days of Trump’s presidency, join us for an engaging weekend of workshops, worship, direct action, and networking in conjunction with Pacific School of Religion’s Alumni/ae Reunion Weekend. Information and registration here.

PODCAST. In a special New Year’s episode of Common Knowledge, the podcast distributed by the Interfaith Youth Core, hosts Carr and Prerna share the writings, events, and people that inspired them during a tumultuous year. They also look to 2017 and discuss what they, as interfaith leaders, hope to see in the year ahead.

COMPASSION CULTIVATION TRAINING (CCT) is an 8-week educational program offered by CCARE, the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education at Stanford, designed to help you improve your resilience and feel more connected to others—ultimately providing an overall sense of well-being. CCT combines traditional contemplative practices with contemporary psychology and scientific research to help you lead a more compassionate life. Through instruction, daily meditation, mindfulness, and in-class interaction, you can strengthen the qualities of compassion, empathy, and kindness. Classes meet for a 2-hours, once a week for 8-weeks and daily meditation home-practice is assigned. See more at CCARE.

THE SPIRITUAL EDGE. The Spiritual Edge is a project at Radio KALW in San Francisco, reporting on the dynamic, growing edges of religion, faith and spirituality in the Bay Area. Breath-focused meditation as an "innovation" for the Buddhist Church of San Francisco, was the subject of a recent report. You can find a link to the show at kalw.org, , or subscribe to their newsletter here.

INTERFAITH EDUCATION RESOURCES. The Scarboro Missions Interfaith Department continues to build its remarkable online resource center for interfaith relationships. Among the items available are a collection of resources that chronicle the Catholic Church’s journey of dialogue with other religions, a journey that began with the Second Vatican Council of the 1960s. There's much more; take a look at their collection of interfaith curriculum resources.




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