Connecting communities of faith, individuals participate in six sessions of dialogue to gain a deeper understanding their own faith tradition, learn the traditions, experiences and practices of others and begin creating friendships. The goal of the 6 week program is to promote a greater understanding of the importance of religious pluralism and harmony, a greater sensitivity to differing religious traditions and the importance of standing up for one another.
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WHAT PEOPLE SAY
The interfaith dialogue was a time where people from various religious backgrounds shared their faith with the "other." During our sessions, we found a lot of common ground between our faith traditions. However, I most enjoyed our differences. It takes a great deal of vulnerability, care and courage to explain your faith without offending a person that's a part of a different faith. In my group, everyone showed support to those expressing their faith traditions. When a person learns so much about other people, relationships form. I witnessed friendships develop. In essence, we were just a group of people trying to get more acquainted with each other. For me, this experience was not about religion; it was about people. This is proof that whenever a group of people communicate and dialogue about differences, the understanding relieves the tension."
There are very few experiences that turn into memories - that is, experiences that we carry with us and hold on to throughout life. This was an unforgettable experience. We ate food that was specific to another person's tradition. We invited a person into our most sacred space: the worship area. We shared our faith history. We embraced a diversity-culture, and then we became friends. We
may not share the same religious values or convictions,
but we do share genuine compassion for one another.
This experience demonstrates and provides the key
to living in a diverse community. The essential ingredient
is communication. "