Over 400 people gathered on a cold, snowy winter afternoon to celebrate the diversity of our community through song, dance, prayer and poetry on Feb. 9, 2014. The 4th annual World Interfaith Harmony Assembly was hosted by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Liverpool NY. Before and after the program, people were encouraged to imprint their hands in paint on a banner that would be sent to the United Nations, the organization that established World Interfaith Harmony Week in 2010.
The theme of this year’s program was the golden rule…highlighting the common goal of loving and respecting oneself, one’s neighbor, and the wider world.
The program included presentations by the Sikh Foundation of Syracuse, the Pebble Hill Presbyterian Church and Congregation Beth Sholom Chevras Shas, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, the Bhutanese-Nepali Hindu Community, Goddess Path/Wicca, Islamic Society of CNY, Church World Service, Liverpool 1st United Methodist Church, the Zen Center of Syracuse, The Baha’i Faith, and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Between presentations, high school students from the Syracuse Chapter of Seeds of Peace read versions of the Golden Rule from various faith traditions.
Rev. Tiffany Steinwert, Dean of SU Hendricks Chapel , spoke about the 2014 SNAP Challenge. She stressed that 50% of Syracuse children go hungry and the need at local food pantries is rising. The SNAP challenge asks people to try to eat on the $29.40 that food stamps pays a person per week and donate the rest of the money they would have spent on food to a food bank.
After a closing blessing, Dr. Joan Hillsman led the audience in singing “Love, Peace, Joy;” some people joined hands and snaked around the room as they sang.
For more detailed notes, click here.