Last Sunday, the Inclusion Center brought together different religions for a Thanksgiving Interfaith Service, helping to create understanding between different faiths while also operating as a food drive.
The Inclusion Center brings ethnically, religious and culturally diverse groups together every year on the Sunday before Thanksgiving. This celebration of diversity has been held for 21 years. Every year the service is held at a different place of worship. Inclusion is acknowledging and honoring individuality, while moving towards unity.
A speaker from each faith gave a 2-minute talk on why they give thanks. Afterwards, there was a social for members of the different faiths to interact.
“The service helps create a space of understanding about other religions,” Sandra Stokes, Associate Director at the Inclusion Center, said. “The social is designed to help develop respect between members of different faiths.”
The event was also a food drive for the Crossroads Urban Center. The Crossroads Urban Center is a multipurpose non-profit organization that aims to create an alternative to poverty. They organize to help low income, disabled and minority Utahns to be advocated for on their behalf in addressing essential issues affecting the quality of their lives. They also provide direct services to help meet basic survival needs.
The service was held at Congregation Kol Ami, a Jewish Synagogue. There were about 300 people of all different faiths in attendance.
Mother of four, Tamara Brown said, “This was a very interesting kind of religious service. But positive, I liked it.”
Inclusion Center Board Member Anne Dolowitz introduced the speakers. “We are all one family,” she said.
Keynote speaker was Alan Bachman, Chair of the Salt Lake Interfaith Round Table. He talked about Judaism and Intercultural relationships. Bachman said all religions exist in their own bubble, but at the same time they are all worshiping the same god.
“Walls cannot protect us, only understanding will,” Bachman said.
For more information about the Inclusion Center call 801-832-3260 or visit their website at inclusioncenter.org.