The Canadian Multicultural Education Foundation (CMEF) and the Edmonton Interfaith Centre (EIC) held a panel discussion over Zoom on Sunday March 21 from 1 to 2:30 for the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (IDERD), on the topic of “Confronting Inherent Racism”.
Speakers were Dr. Chaldeans Mensah, Beryl Scott and Dr. Alvin Finkel, and we are grateful for the added participation of Elder Pauline Paulson and moderator Harriet Tinka.
On March 8 we continued our new virtual “Lunch & Learn” with a very informative talk by Gary St. Armand, CEO of the Bissell Centre. This 100+ year old agency has a simple goal: a Community Without Poverty. Gary spoke about how they are working toward this ambitious aim in these challenging times as well as his own background which makes him ideally suited for the job.
On Tuesday, February 23rd, the Parliament of the World’s Religions hosted a special observance of UN World Interfaith Harmony Week on the theme of healing and loving our neighbors.
The program featured the participation of Chicago faith leaders reflecting on “How do we as communities and individuals heal and build better together?”. While the PWR is based in Chicago, this discussion of reaching across lines of difference, and having a collective conversation about our shared truth, resonate strongly with the Edmonton Interfaith Centre’s mission.
In light of news headlines regarding GraceLife Church in Parkland County, where leaders and members have defied COVID-19 restrictions imposed by the Province, we share once again this message from a group Edmonton and area spiritual leaders, reiterating our commitment to putting safety first.
Please join us for the 2021 Building Bridges Among Faith Traditions: A Multifaith Concert, which premiered at 2 pm on Sunday, February 7, 2021. This event is presented in celebration of World Interfaith Harmony Week as well as the 25th anniversary of the Edmonton Interfaith Centre for Education and Action (EICEA). There were prayers/readings from various faith traditions and exciting performances by Ensemble Topaz, Melanie Gall, Martin Kerr and Sharmila Mathur.
As part of World Interfaith Harmony Week, the EIC held a Zoom poetry reading on February 6, 2021. Our special guest poets each read from their own work and introduced audience members to other poetry that inspires them. Discussion followed the readings followed in turn by a poetry sharing circle (or open mic), where attendees were invited to share a single poem that they have written or that has been written by someone else but proved to be a source of personal inspiration.
Lori Stewart and Jack Jervis have been facilitating movie discussions at Naramata Centre, BC, St Stephen’s College, and various churches in Edmonton for over 25 years. Lori is a spiritual director, poet, and was associate faculty at St Stephen’s College. Jack is a retired personnel manager who has made film watching his hobby for most of his life.
The film we watched and discussed was “The Life Ahead,” starring Sophia Loren. Its running time is 1 hour and 34 minutes and is available on Netflix.
The film is about a Holocaust survivor with a daycare business in seaside Italy who takes in a 12-year-old street kid who recently robbed her. Her diverse community of friends provide support for both the old woman and the boy.