WISDOM Newsletter – Nov & Dec 2011 Special

Written by WISDOM on . Posted in Newsletters

THE WISDOM WINDOW

NOVEMBER and DECEMBER 2011 Events

WISDOM

Friday, November 11

The 60th Annual Jewish Book Fair will present “The Essence of Chaldean Culture Through Food – A Tasting” on Friday, November 11 at 11:30 AM at the Jewish Community Center on West Maple Road in W. Bloomfield, MI. Join us for a culinary journey to one of the world’s oldest cuisines, dating back to ancient Mesopotamia. Demonstrating recipes from the new Chaldean American Ladies of Charity (CALC) cookbook, Ma Baseema, the presentation will also include a history of the Chaldeans, both in Mesopotamia and the Metro Detroit area. Members of the CALC will demonstrate making 2 foods: vegetarian dolma and baklawa.

 

Presenting a meal to guests is an important cultural experience of the Chaldean community. Thus, we invite you to come to the table to share and enjoy foods that are time-honored traditions of the Chaldean culture. The cost is $10 per person, for a meal that includes vegetarian dolma, baklawa, and Iraqi salad. Registration is required by November 3. To register, please call the Book Fair Office at 248.432.5692 or order online at www.jccdet.org

 

This program is co-sponsored by the Chaldean/Jewish Building Community Initiative – Arts & Culture Division and WISDOM.

 

bracelet

 

MAKE INTERFAITH BRACELETS WITH WISDOM

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 8, 2011

4:00 PM – 7:00 PM

AT THE UNITY OF FARMINGTON HILLS CHURCH

32500 W. 13 MILE ROAD, FARMINGTON HILLS, 48334

 

Come and join WISDOM and Nomi Joyrich, owner of the Franklin Bead Works, as we put together beads and charms of different faith traditions to make beautiful interfaith bracelets for the holiday season. Light supper will be served. Cost is $35.00 for the beads, charms and dinner.

 

Email Gail Katz, gailkatz@comcast.net, or Paula Drewek, drewekpau@aol.com, or Fran Hildebrandt, fhildebr@aol.com with your name, address, telephone number(s) and email address. Send your check for $35, made out to WISDOM, to WISDOM, P.O. Box 7091, Bloomfield Hills, Mi 48302. Registrations must be received by November 18th so that Nomi Joyrich has time to order the interfaith charms!!

 

If you are planning on coming to our interfaith Jewelry making event, we would like to request that you also bring some items to assist women and children in Detroit who have lost their cash assistance as of October 1, 2011. Over 6500 families in Detroit will be impacted by the loss of this cash assistance. WISDOM is asking you to bring some winter items such as socks, underwear, hats, gloves, scarves, coats, in addition to jeans, sweater, pajamas and any personal hygiene items that you can spare. We will be taking a collection at our winter WISDOM events, and then donating these items to a clothing pantry on the east side of Detroit. Thank you!!

 

kids against hunger 

JOIN WISDOM AT OUR KIDS AGAINST HUNGER PROJECT

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 11, 2011

2:00 PM – 5:00 PM

AT THE RUSH TRUCKING WAREHOUSE

35160 E. Michigan Ave., Wayne, MI 48184

 

Event is co-sponsored by The Bharatiya Temple in Troy, The
Muslim Unity Center in Bloomfield Hills, The National Council of Jewish Women, and St. Hugo of the Hills Catholic Church in Bloomfield Hills.

 

We welcome your individual donations to this Community Service Project with Kids Against Hunger. You are welcome to bring family members, but registration is required. To register email Gail Katz, gailkatz@comcast.net, Paula Drewek, drewekpau@aol.com or Fran Hildebrandt, fhildebr@aol.com with the names of people in your group, where you are from, phone number(s), email contact information, and which shift you prefer. There will be two shifts – the first shift starting at 2:00 PM and the second shift starting at 3:15 PM!!

 

All children must be supervised by parent/guardian!!

 

If you are planning on coming to our food packing community service project, we would like to request that you also bring some items to assist women and children in Detroit who have lost their cash assistance as of October 1, 2011. Over 6500 families in Detroit will be impacted by the loss of this cash assistance. WISDOM is asking you to bring some winter items such as socks, underwear, hats, gloves, scarves, coats, in addition to jeans, sweater, pajamas and any personal hygiene items that you can spare. We will be taking a collection at our winter WISDOM events, and then donating these items to a clothing pantry on the east side of Detroit. Thank you!!

RembrandtThe Interfaith Leadership Council

of Metropolitan Detroit

and

The Jewish News/ Chaldean News Building Community Initiative

are sponsoring

“Religion, Community and the Arts

Breaking Barriers, Building Bridges”

 

Sunday, December 4, 2011 – 3:00 – 6:30 p.m.

Lecture/Symposium · Exhibit Tour · Reception

 

in conjunction with the exhibit

Rembrandt and the Face of Jesus

at the Detroit Institute of Arts!!

 

The symposium’s panelists from the Jewish, Christian, and Muslim religions will look at the person of Jesus, examine the context of his time, and discuss how their individual faiths view the figures of Jesus.

 

Patron Ticket – $100 (includes preferred seating in lecture, exhibit tour with curator and reception)

 

Regular Ticket – $48 (includes lecture, exhibit and reception)

 

Include your name, address, email, and phone number

and mail check to:

 

The Interfaith Leadership Council

10821 Capital Street, Oak Park, MI 48237-3147

 

To read more about the panelists and the program and to register online go to:

 

http://www.twsclients.com/clients/symposium.html and

www.detroitinterfaithcouncil.com

 

Attention High School Teens!!
 
Teens working together
 
JOIN US AT FACE TO FAITH!!
 
An Interfaith Initiative
for Teens of all faith traditions!!
 
Thursday, November 17th
6:30 PM – 9:00 PM
at the Muslim Unity Center
1830 West Square Lake Road
Bloomfield Hills, MI 48302

 

Meet new people

and make new friends!

Learn about Islam

and take a tour of the mosque!

 

Participate in interfaith round table discussion

while you dine on delicious

Middle Eastern food!!

 

For more information

and to register

contact Gail Katz, gailkatz@comcast.net

WISDOM Co-Founder

 

or Josh Morof, jbmorof@yahoo.com

Andover High School Senior

and Founder of Face to Faith

Go to our WISDOM websites at www.interfaithwisdom.org

Read our interfaith story of the week from our book Friendship and Faith,

and find the link to buy the book at

Amazon at

Contact Information

 

Gail Katz gailkatz@comcast.net
phone: 248-978-6664

Join Our Mailing List

BECOME A FRIEND OF WISDOM! Click on this link to go to the WISDOM website (right side of home page) to print out form to support WISDOM.

WISDOM Newsletter – November 2011

Written by WISDOM on . Posted in Newsletters

THE WISDOM WINDOW

NOVEMBER 2011

WISDOM

Friday, November 11

Jewish Book Fair: Ma Baseema: Middle Eastern Cooking with Chaldean Flair. Discussion of the book with a cooking demonstration and tasting. WISDOM is a sponsor. 11:30 AM at the West Bloomfield Jewish Community Center. More information below!!

Wednesday, November 16

Five Women Five Journeys presentation at St. Mary, Our Lady of the Snows Parish, 1955 E. Commerce Rd., Milford. 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM. Contact Mary at the church at 248-685-2702, or Elaine at WISDOM, bookfairmama@comcast.net

Thursday, November 17

Interfaith teen event at the Muslim Unity Center as part of the Face to Faith initiative. See information below!!

Sunday, December 4

“Rembrandt and the Face of Jesus” – an interfaith panel program, sponsored by the Interfaith Leadership Council, will be held in conjunction with the Rembrandt exhibit from 3:00 pm – 6:30 PM at the Detroit Institute of Art. There will be a charge for this event. Go to www.detroitinterfaithcouncil.com to register. More information below!!

Thursday, December 8

Make interfaith beaded jewelry bracelets with Nomi Joyrich, owner of the Franklin Bead Works. Program will run from 4:00 – 7:00 PM at Unity of Farmington Hills 32500 West 13 Mile Road, Farmington Hills, 48334. Cost for attendance is $35.00 which will include beads, charms, staff time and a light supper!! See more information below.

Sunday, December 11

Kids Against Hunger Project – Community Service project to package dry meals for the hungry in Metro Detroit and abroad – at the Rush Trucking Warehouse 38500 Van Born Road, Wayne, MI 48184. 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM. Contact Gail Katz at gailkatz@comcast.net or Paula Drewek at drewekpau@aol.com. See more information below.

Wednesday, January 11

WISDOM film discussion group meets to view the film “Pray the Devil Back to Hell.” Discussion will be facilitated by the Rev. Dan Buttry, American International Baptist Ministries. 6:30 PM – 9:00 PM at the Birmingham Community House in conjunction with the Race Relations and Diversity Task Force, 380 S. Bates St., Birmingham, 48009, cookies and coffee served!! Contact Sheri Schiff to register, sheritschiff@gmail.com

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 11THThe 60th Annual Jewish Book Fair will present “The Essence of Chaldean Culture Through Food – A Tasting” on Friday, November 11 at 11:30 AM at the Jewish Community Center on West Maple Road in W. Bloomfield, MI. Join us for a culinary journey to one of the world’s oldest cuisines, dating back to ancient Mesopotamia. Demonstrating recipes from the new Chaldean American Ladies of Charity (CALC) cookbook, Ma Baseema, the presentation will also include a history of the Chaldeans, both in Mesopotamia and the Metro Detroit area. Members of the CALC will demonstrate making 2 foods: vegetarian dolma and baklawa.

 

Presenting a meal to guests is an important cultural experience of the Chaldean community. Thus, we invite you to come to the table to share and enjoy foods that are time-honored traditions of the Chaldean culture. The cost is $10 per person, for a meal that includes vegetarian dolma, baklawa, and Iraqi salad. Registration is required by November 3. To register, please call the Book Fair Office at 248.432.5692 or order online at www.jccdet.org

This program is co-sponsored by the Chaldean/Jewish Building Community Initiative – Arts & Culture Division and WISDOM.

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 8TH

Christ Church Cranbrook

 

WISDOM presented its signature panel discussion “Five Women Five Journeys” at Christ Church Cranbrook on September 21, 2011. Shown in the photo are Ellen Ehrlich, Raj Chehl, Dianne Coin, Gail Katz, Peggy Dahlberg from Christ Church Cranbrook, Ranya Shbeib, and Fran Hildebrandt.

 

THE COMMITTEE WORKING ON THE

2012 THIRTEENTH ANNUAL WORLD SABBATH

WOULD LIKE YOU TO MARK THE DATE

OF SUNDAY, JANUARY 29th FROM 4:00 – 5:30 PM

WITH A PRE-GLOW THAT BEGINS AT 3:00 PM

 

AT GREATER NEW MOUNT MORIAH

MISSIONARY BAPTIST CHURCH

586 OWEN

DETROIT

 

OUR YOUTH WILL AGAIN BE LEADING THE SERVICE

WITH PEACE PRAYERS

FROM DIFFERENT FAITH TRADITIONS

AND THE CHILDREN OF PEACE OF ALL RELIGIONS

WILL BE WAVING PEACE BANNERS!!

 

OUR MUSICAL OFFERINGS WILL HIGHLIGHT

THE DIVERSITY OF METRO DETROIT!!

 

PLEASE VISIT OUR WEBSITE

WWW.WORLDSABBATH.ORG

 

FOR ANSWERS TO YOUR QUESTIONS

AND TO GET INFORMATION ABOUT

HOW TO GET THE YOUTH FROM YOUR

SYNAGOGUE, MOSQUE, CHURCH, TEMPLE INVOLVED

CONTACT GAIL KATZ, WORLD SABBATH CHAIR

gailkatz@comcast.net 248-978-6664

 

Interfaith Articles and Links of Interest 

1) The stories of the Holocaust have been documented, distorted, clarified and filtered through memory. Yet new stories keep coming, occasionally altering the grand, incomplete mosaic of Holocaust history.

 

One of them, dramatized in a French film released here last week, focuses on an unlikely savior of Jews during the Nazi occupation of France: the rector of a Paris mosque. Muslims, it seems, rescued Jews from the Nazis.

“Les Hommes Libres” (“Free Men”) is a tale of courage not found in French textbooks. According to the story, Si Kaddour Benghabrit, the founder and rector of the Grand Mosque of Paris, provided refuge and certificates of Muslim identity to a small number of Jews to allow them to evade arrest and deportation.

It was simpler than it sounds. In the early 1940s France was home to a large population of North Africans, including thousands of Sephardic Jews. The Jews spoke Arabic and shared many of the same traditions and everyday habits as the Arabs. Neither Muslims nor Jews ate pork. Both Muslim and Jewish men were circumcised. Muslim and Jewish names were often similar. Read more:

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/04/movies/how-a-paris-mosque-sheltered-jews-in-the-holocaust.html?_r=3&pagewanted=all%3Fsrc%3Dtp

 

 

2) Check out this article about the prayer “I Hope For A World Where” and the teens that came to the 9/11 AOK Detroit event down at Focus: HOPE in Detroit:

 

http://www.readthespirit.com/explore/2011/10/3/praying-for-our-world-turning-911-memories-to-hope.html

 

3) Nobel Peace Prize 2011 handed jointly to three womenThe Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, her compatriot Leymah Gbowee, and Yemeni women’s rights activist Tawakkul KarmanThe award was intended as a strong signal in favour of the empowerment of women in the developing world.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/liberia/8812949/Nobel-Peace-Prize-2011-handed-jointly-to-three-women.html

 

4) Watch this exclusive interview with Leymah Gbowee, creator of the film “Pray the Devil Back to Hell.”

 

http://www.odysseynetworks.org/video/Odyssey-Networks-exclusive-interview-with-2011-Nobel-Peace-Prize-Laureate-Leymah-Gbowee

 

5) Diwali Illuminates Global Pluralism: “E Pluribus Unum”

 

Deepavali popularly known as Diwali, literally means a row (avali) of lights (deepa). In essence it is the celebration of the awakening and awareness of the Inner Light. This Inner Light, though not seen outside, outshines all darkness by removing all obstacles and dispelling all ignorance. When this inner realization blossoms then there is universal compassion, love, and the awareness of the oneness of all things. It awakens the individual to one’s true nature, not in the physical, but as the unchanging, infinite, and transcendent reality; the Sat (Truth), Chit (Consciousness) and Ananda (Inner Joy). This, for the Hindus, is the very goal of life. Monotheistic Hinduism’s original name is “Sanatana Dharma” or Eternal Order. Read more by clicking on the link below!! Diwali began on October 26th through October 30th!!

 

http://www.parliamentofreligions.org/news/index.php/2011/10/diwali-illuminates-global-pluralism-e-pluribus-unum/?utm_source=Parliament+Newsletter&utm_campaign=7be7b8400d-Newsletter_26_Divali_10_20_2011&utm_medium=email

 

Watch this video that explains the holiday of Diwali:

http://www.odysseynetworks.org/video/diwali-the-festival-of-lights

 

 

 

 

Face To Faith:

An Interfaith Program That Brings Teens

Together to Learn From Each Other.

 

About 60 Muslim, Christian and Jewish high school teens came together at the First Presbyterian Church of Birmingham on Sept. 22 for an evening of learning about each other’s faiths and teen-to-teen dialogue. They came to break down myths and stereotypes, increase respect and promote understanding. This was the second program in the series called “Face To Faith.” The first was held at a synagogue. In the main sanctuary of the church, the Rev. Amy Morgan gave a brief introduction to Christianity. She explained that the Presbyterian denomination of Christianity is one of 38,000 different denominations, and is oneof the “reformed” churches. She emphasized some of the similarities Christianity shares with Judaism – the Torah and the Old Testament, the communion meal that originated from the Passover seder, and the importance of the water in the baptismal font to the importance of the Jewish mikveh. The teens then went to the auditorium for treats and discussions at tables set up for interfaith interaction. They discussed stereotypes or misconceptions they had witnessed or encountered personally. Josh Morof, a Bloomfield Hills Andover High School senior and an active participant in the Jewish community, was the energy behind “Face to Faith.” He explained to the group that it was his idea to bring teens of different faiths together when he realized how much he learned from befriending a Muslim teen he got to know in his ceramics class. He shared his dream to break down the segregation of Jewish, Muslim and Christian teens in his high school and, after attending his school’s Challenge Day, he knew that it was up to teens to “Be the Change!” Three teens were then invited to the stage to take part in an interfaith panel discussion. Hiba Chaabi, an Andover High School senior, spoke about being a Muslim and how wearing the hijab was the favorite part of her religion because people knew from the start that Islam was very important to her. Rachel Berlin, a North Farmington High School senior and president of Michigan Region BBG, spoke about Tikkun Olam, or social justice, as being the most important feature of Judaism for her. Emily Held, a Birmingham Seaholm High School junior, shared that the hardest part of her Christian faith was trying to remember that the kids she didn’t like at school were also “God’s children” and she had to behave appropriately. The next Face to Faith event will be held at the Muslim Unity Center in Bloomfield Hills on Nov. 17.

 

 

 

For more information about local interfaith initiatives, contact Gail Katz,Co-founder of WISDOM at (248) 978- 6664 or gailkatz@comcast.net

 

 

 

Philosophers and theologians worldwide

condemn Iran’s attack on Baha’i educators

 

 

More than 40 distinguished philosophers and theologians from 16 countries have joined the condemnation of Iran’s policy to bar young Baha’is and others from higher education. In an unprecedented global initiative, the 43 prominent academics – of Christian, Hindu, Jewish, and Muslim backgrounds – have signed an open letter, published on October 10, 2011 in The Daily Telegraph (UK), and reported in the Folha de Sao Paulo (Brazil).

 

The letter condemns in particular recent attacks by the Iranian authorities on an informal educational initiative of the Baha’i community – known as the Baha’i Institute for Higher Education (BIHE) – in which Baha’i professors, debarred by the Iranian government from practicing their professions, voluntarily offer their services to teach young community members who are banned from higher education.

Seven Baha’is associated with BIHE recently made their first court appearances after being imprisoned for four months. They were detained after a series of raids on 22 May, in which 39 homes associated with BIHE were targeted. The Institute’s activities have since been declared “illegal.”

 

“As philosophers, theologians, and scholars of religion, living throughout the world, we are raising our voices in protest against the recent attack by Iranian authorities on the Baha’i Institute for Higher Education,” the open letter states. “To acquire knowledge and learning is the sacred and legal right of all; indeed, the state is obliged to provide it. In Iran, the government has done the opposite…” “Attacks such as these, against the rights of citizens to organize and be educated in freedom, can no longer be tolerated. We call upon the Iranian government not only to cease its persecution of Baha’is, but to provide, and promote, education for all.”

 

Among the most celebrated academics backing the call is Dr. Charles Taylor, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at McGill University, Canada. He signed the letter, he said, out of his deep sense of “conviction that there ought to be ‘no compulsion’ in religion.” It is also “connected to my disquiet about the Iranian revolution,” said Professor Taylor, “and the way its finer ideals have been hijacked by people who are abusing their faith in order to make it serve as a tool of mobilization against the ‘enemy.’”

 

Another prominent figure to add his name to the list is Hilary Putnam, Cogan University Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Harvard, U.S.A.

“Ever since the American and French revolutions at the end of the eighteenth century, the aspiration of peoples of different ethnicities, nationalities, and creeds for their fundamental human rights, including the right to worship as one’s conscience dictates and the right to education, have gained momentum,” said Professor Putnam. “The persecution of the Baha’i university students in Iran is a shameful attempt to turn the clock back to the dark ages. Their cause deserves the support of enlightened and moral people everywhere,” he said.

  Faith Communities Coalition on Foster Care andthe Kirk in the Hills Presbyterian Church Foster Care Ministry

Present:

 An Evening with Maura Corrigan, Director,

Michigan Department of Human Services

 

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011

6:30PM – 8:30PM

at Kirk in the Hills

1340 West Long Lake Road, Bloomfield Hills, MI 48302

 

Director Corrigan and others will speak about children in foster care and how

Call 313 593-5052 email: SOCCProject@umd.mich.edu

Website: www.SaveOurChildrenCoalition.org

 

Questions?

contact Yvonne Rundell yrundell@comcast.net or Sheri Falvay skfalvay@gmail.com

Or Liz Williamson williamsone@macomb.edu

Reservations at kirkfostercare@kirkinthehills.org

 

Faith communities can make a difference. Agencies will have booths to display activities and opportunities to support children.

 

Statement from Religious Leaders Forum

on Shelter and Literacy

Friday, October 28, 2011 at 5:32PM

We, the members of the Religious Leaders Forum of Metropolitan Detroit, are united in our concern for the dignity of every human being. Our entire community continues to be especially hard hit by the struggling economy. This has created a moral crisis to which we must respond.

Therefore, we agree that it is our moral responsibility to advocate together for the well-being of all who live in our community.

There are two areas of critical and immediate importance to us:

First, it is imperative that all people in our community have adequate warmth and shelter this winter. No one should freeze to death in our community this winter.

Second, literacy among both children and adults is essential to the well being of all individuals and for the productive future of our whole community.

Many of our congregations have established warming shelters and other support for those in great need. Some also provide literacy programs. We are committed to supporting existing programs by mobilizing volunteers, providing more facilities as appropriate, and taking other practical steps to address these critical challenges to the well being of people in metropolitan Detroit.

We join together to pledge our attention and our moral leadership to seek comprehensive strategies from all our community leaders to address these critical concerns. We pledge our determination to work with them to help make those strategies successful.

 

 

The following members of the Religious Leaders Forum of Metropolitan Detroit pledge support for the statement on shelter and literacy:

 

Archibishop Allen H. Vigneron, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit

Rabbi Joseph Krakoff, Congregation Shaarey Zedek

Bishop Donald Kreiss, SE Michigan Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

Bishop Edgar Vann, Second Ebenezer Church

Rt. Rev. Wendell N. Gibbs, Jr., Episcopal Diocese of Michigan

Imam Hassan Qazwini, Islamic Center of America

Imam Steve Mustafa Elturk, Islamic Organization of North America and chairman, Council of Islamic Organizations of Michigan Imams Committee

Metropolitan Nicholas, Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Detroit

Stake President Michael Lantz, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

Rabbi Harold Loss, Temple Israel

Rabbi Michael Moskowitz, Temple Shir Shalom and president, Michigan Board of Rabbis

Rev. Dr. Allen Timm, Prebytery of Detroit

Rev. Dr. Marsha Foster Boyd, Ecumenical Theological Seminary

Rev. Dr. Michael Andrew Owens, president, Council of Baptist Pastors of Detroit & Vicinity

Rev. Ed Rowe, Central United Methodist Church

Very Rev. Garabed Kochakian, St. John Armenian Orthodox Church

Rev. George Shalhoub, Basilica of St. Mary Antiochian Orthodox Church

Rev. Kenneth Flowers, Greater New Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist Church and president, Michigan Progressive Baptist Convention

Rev. Kevin Turman, Historic Second Baptist Church, MOSES Clergy Caucus

Very Rev. Laurence Lazar, St. George Romanian Orthodox Cathedral

Rev. William Walker, First Baptist Church of Detroit, American Baptist Churches

 

 

LEGACY IS AN AWARD-WINNING PLAY
ABOUT THE RESCUE OF A JEWISH FAMILY FROM NAZI GERMANY IN 1939
Says Metro Detroit producer and director, Evelyn Orbach, “We hear so much about bullying in schools and hate groups around the United States, including Michigan, so we can’t allow our young people to become desensitized to suffering from exclusion and discrimination. This play sends the message that one ordinary person can have a big impact and help make a better world. With legacy, we want to reach people, especially young people, and teach them about respect and valuing our differences.” Check out the flyer below for ticket prices and dates.

WISDOM: A Powerful Initiative for Muslim Women in Metro DetroitBy Janan Kabir

 

 

On the 10th anniversary of September 11th I sat contemplating whether or not to attend Acts of Kindness Detroit for the National Day of Remembrance and Renewal. Part of me wanted to attend and be counted among those who were there to show solidarity between people of faith on such an important day while another part of me wished to draw my blinds and forget all about what that very day represents.

 

Like so many I was feeling frazzled and emotionally burnt-out with the very nature of what this time of year brings as an American Muslim. With the extensive media coverage providing a constant reminder and the echoes of voices determined to demonize Islam the thought of attending such an event seemed daunting and futile.

 

Yet another voice brought me back to the reality that as a Muslim I have the ability to change perceptions, shed light on the true teachings of Islam and connect with my neighbors on a level the media fails to touch on. The ultimate choice was to remain passive or to be present.

 

As I entered the event I was awestruck by the diversity of people who had ventured out to honor remembrance and bridge together in the commonality of humanity. It was heartwarming to see many faces from the Muslim community sending a message to the world that we stand together with our fellow neighbors for peace and tolerance. Our mere presence sent the vital message that we are active members of society making a contribution to the good.

 

As we performed acts of kindness with people of all faith traditions the positive energy grew nearly drowning out the negative stereotypes of the popular media. The welcoming smiles affirmed that we are all brothers and sisters in humanity-not separated by our differences but instead enriched by them.

 

I knew with certainty that it was incumbent upon me to be present as a Muslim woman and to reach out to others as a human being first-starting in my own community. While waiting for someone else to take on that role surely that same some one was anticipating my action in bringing things to fruition. Yet, these opportunities belong to all of us.

 

Had I remained immobilized by the climate of fear and doubt this moment of clarity may have never come.

 

WISDOM, Women’s Interfaith Solution for Dialogue and Outreach in Metro Detroit is an organization you should not only be aware of but it is one that deserves your contribution and support. Despite the current climate of fear and Islamophobia that aims to discredit the faith of Islam WISDOM supports and respects all faith traditions while encouraging women to come together in faith and solidarity to make a difference in their immediate communities.

For Muslim women in Metro Detroit WISDOM represents a ripe opportunity to contribute to the community on a local level while connecting with individuals who are open to interfaith dialogue and understanding.

 

Five Women Five Journeys: How Different Are We?
WISDOM Women together

This unique WISDOM program features personal stories of women of different faith traditions – how their childhood impacted their beliefs today, what the challenges are for women in their faith tradition, what parts of their religion are misunderstood, how reaching out to someone from a different faith has enriched their lives.
To inquire about a Five Women Five Journeys Program for your organization, contact Elaine Schonberger at bookfairmama@comcast.net or Paula Drewek at Drewekpau@aol.com .

Check out the latest story about a friendship that crosses religion, race, or ethnic boundaries at www.friendshipandfaith.com.
Email Gail Katz at gailkatz@comcast.net if you have a personal story for the friendshipandfaith.com website!!

LINKS THAT YOU CAN USE FOR MORE INFORMATION!!

1) Go to http://www.readthespirit.com/religious-holidays-festivals/ for fascinating information about upcoming Religious holidays that your neighbors of different faith traditions may be celebrating!!

2) Go to http://www.readthespirit.com/were-making-news/ for a listing of all the articles written about the WISDOM Book Friendship and Faith: the WISDOM of Women Creating Alliances for Peace.

Go to our WISDOM websites at www.interfaithwisdom.org

Read our interfaith story of the week from our book Friendship and Faith,

and find the link to buy the book at

Amazon at

Contact Information

 

Gail Katz gailkatz@comcast.net
phone: 248-978-6664

Join Our Mailing List

BECOME A FRIEND OF WISDOM! Click on this link to go to the WISDOM website (right side of home page) to print out form to support WISDOM.

WISDOM Newsletter – October 2011

Written by WISDOM on . Posted in Newsletters

THE WISDOM WINDOW

OCTOBER 2011

WISDOM

WISDOM wishes all of our Jewish friends

a very Happy and Healthy New Year!!

Thursday, October 27

“Flowers Aren’t Enough,” an event to educate women and teenaged girls about abusive relationships. Sponsored by the National Council of Jewish Women (Greater Detroit Section) and Temple Israel Sisterhood, and supported by WISDOM. The program will begin at 7:00 PM at Temple Israel, 5725 Walnut Lake Road, West Bloomfield. For more information contact NCJW at 248-355-3300. See Flyer Below!!

Friday, November 11

Jewish Book Fair: Ma Baseema: Middle Eastern Cooking with Chaldean Flair. Discussion of the book with a cooking demonstration and tasting. WISDOM is a sponsor. 11:30 AM at the West Bloomfield Jewish Community Center.

Wednesday, November 16

Five Women Five Journeys presentation at St. Mary, Our Lady of the Snows Parish, 1955 E. Commerce Rd., Milford. 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM. Contact Mary at the church at 248-685-2702, or Elaine at WISDOM, bookfairmama@comcast.net

Sunday, December 4

“Rembrandt and the Face of Jesus” – an interfaith panel program, sponsored by the Interfaith Leadership Council, will be held in conjunction with the Rembrandt exhibit from 3:00 pm – 6:30 PM at the Detroit Institute of Art. There will be a charge for this event. Contact Gail Katz at gailkatz@comcast.net See article below!!

Thursday, December 8

Make an interfaith beaded jewelry bracelet with Nomi Joyrich, owner of the Franklin Bead Works. Program will run from 4:00 – 7:00 PM at Unity of Farmington Hills 32500 West 13 Mile Road, Farmington Hills, 48334. Cost for attendance is $35.00 which will include beads, charms, staff time and a light supper!! RSVP to Gail Katz, gailkatz@comcast.net

Sunday, December 11

Kids Against Hunger Project – Community Service project to package dry meals for the hungry in Metro Detroit and abroad – at the Rush Trucking Warehouse 38500 Van Born Road, Wayne, MI 48184. 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM. Contact Gail Katz at gailkatz@comcast.net or Paula Drewek at drewekpau@aol.com

Wednesday, January 11

WISDOM film discussion group meets to view the film “Pray the Devil Back to Hell.” Discussion will be facilitated by the Rev. Dan Buttry, American International Baptist Ministries. 6:30 PM – 9:00 PM at the Birmingham Community House in conjunction with the Race Relations and Diversity Task Force, 380 S. Bates St., Birmingham, 48009, cookies and coffee served!! Contact Sheri Schiff to register, sheritschiff@gmail.com

Kirk Flyer for October 2011
AOK Sign

Acts of Kindness Detroit at Focus: HOPE

September 11, 2011

The Tenth Anniversary of 9/11

 

By Gail Katz

WISDOM Co-Founder

Education Co-Chair for the InterFaith Leadership Council

 

Major community leaders and organizations marked the tenth anniversary of 9/11 through A-OK (Acts of Kindness) Detroit, a day of community service and intercultural connection on Sunday, September 11th.

Volunteers met at the Focus: HOPE campus in Detroit to perform service activities for its food outreach, education and community revitalization efforts. They joined volunteers from ACCESS, Women’s Interfaith Solutions for Dialogue and Outreach in Metro Detroit (WISDOM), the Interfaith Leadership Council of Metropolitan Detroit, the Council of Islamic Organizations of Michigan, City Year Detroit, United Way, J-Serve, the Jewish Community Relations Council, and the University of Michigan-Dearborn.

The aim of A-OK Detroit was to transform 9/11 from a day of mourning into a day of caring and service by bringing together diverse community groups with common missions of unity, peace, and mutual understanding. The Acts of Kindness (A-OK) mission was to change 9/11 into a day for people to work side by side to find our commonality as human beings, to reduce myths and stereotypes about the “other” and increase respect and understanding.

Starting at 1:00 PM about 830 volunteers came together in the parking lot of Focus: HOPE for a kick-off rally. William Jones, CEO of Focus: HOPE, Annie Ellington, Chief Service Officer at the City of Detroit Office of Mayor Bing, Hassan Jabeer, CEO of ACCESS, and Asim Mishra, Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy at the Corporation for National and Community Service in Washington D.C., were some of the dignitaries who spoke at the rally. City Year Detroit and AmeriCorps volunteers ended the rally with exercises to energize the crowd, and then everyone was deployed to their community service project sites. The adults served in many places – working in lots near Focus: HOPE to pick up trash and cut down weeds and in the food warehouse, packing food for the hungry in Detroit. The adults were split up through a color-coded system that assured each team consisted of people of all faiths, races, ethnicities and ages. Chinese transfer students from the University of Michigan’s Dearborn campus worked alongside Arab Americans. Christians and Jews worked side by side Muslims and Buddhists in a spirit of respect and harmony.

Adults working side by side

The teens first observed the planting of a tree in front of one of Focus:HOPE’s buildings in memory of those who died on 9/11/2001. The A-OK Detroit Committee also purchased a plaque to go along with the memorial tree. That plaque states: “September 11, 2011 – Commemorating the Tenth Anniversary of 9/11 through Community Connection and Dialogue.”

 

The teens then came indoors and worked in the conference room upstairs at Focus: HOPE writing letters to our troops, stuffing backpacks for Detroit Public School students, putting supplies (donated by Arts and Scraps on Harper Ave. in Detroit) into kits for Detroit Public School teachers to use with their students, and creating “inventions” from Arts and Scraps supplies and writing about what these inventions do, so that DPS teachers can use them as models for their student assignments. Jewish teens from J-Serve (Jewish Teens Serving the World) worked together with Muslim teens from ACCESS (Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services) and Christian teens from various churches in the Metro Detroit area. Every teen who registered was given a different colored wristband that identified the organization that he/she was volunteering with. In this way we directed the teens to find a partner who had a different colored wristband and sit at a table that represented the diversity of A-OK Detroit!

Teens working together

Following the service projects the teens engaged in structured dialogue with each other. They each shared information about why they came to A-OK Detroit; what opportunities there were in their high schools for crossing boundaries to make friends of other faiths, cultures, or races; what traditions there were in their faiths or cultures about naming a child (and how that may have impacted the name they were given!), and what misunderstandings or stereotypes they had personally experienced or witnessed.

Some of our teens and young adult volunteers had a chance to share why A-OK Detroit was so important to them. Allye Gaietto, a City Year Detroit Volunteer, came from Muskegon, Michigan and was dedicating 10 months to service in Detroit. Four days a week she works with sixth through tenth graders in Detroit, concentrating on ready and math skills. Every Friday Allye works at a senior center in Detroit helping with beautification of the facility and the grounds. Allye said that City Year Detroit had given her an incredible opportunity to work on her leadership skills!! Helping out at A-OK Detroit was part of her service mission.

Sumaya Musleh, a Wayne State University volunteer who is a student at Wayne State University, volunteered at A-OK with ACCESS, “because of the chaos that has happened in Dearborn – with Terry Jones, the fanatic from Florida who burned the Koran, coming to Dearborn to spread the word that Islam is a bad religion. We are all citizens and we need to care about each other.”

Abby Siegal, a 14 year-old Groves High School student commented “It doesn’t matter what religion we are, we all need to help our community. I have friends who said they were too scared to go down into Detroit to volunteer. We are all just people – human beings that need to understand one another.”

Gabby Lowenthal, another J-Serve teen volunteer from West Bloomfield High School, observed, “People forget that there were Christians, Jews, and Muslims in the buildings that were attacked on 9/11!! I was too little at the time to understand, but now I know enough to give back to the community, so that nothing like this happens again.”

Following the dialogue hour, the teens were invited to have some refreshments in the cafeteria on the lower level, and spent some time together filling four flip charts with responses to sentence starters such as:

“I hope for a world where …..”

“Something I learned from the dialogue is….”

“Participating in a Service Project Makes Me Feel …”

“Participating in a Service Project Makes Me Realize …”

Flip Charts

Adults came back from their community service projects at about 4:00 PM and also had a chance to dialogue with each other as they broke bread (pizza) together.

Our A-OK Detroit event was a tremendous success!! We owe so much to all of the organizations that dedicated their time, creativity and resources to this incredible event. Bill Wenzel, Director of Volunteer Opportunities at Focus: HOPE summed up our A-OK mission. “This whole concept of A-OK meshes with the mission of Focus: HOPE. I only wish our Co-Founder Eleanor Josaitis, who recently passed away, could have seen all of the adults and teens from different faiths and ethnic backgrounds, coming together for a common purpose – to break down barriers, understand we are all human, and lift up Detroit!”

 

As the Co-Founder of WISDOM and the Co-Chair of the Education Committee of the InterFaith Leadership Council, I am so thrilled that my life’s passion – bringing diverse folks together for community connection and dialogue – was realized at A-OK Detroit!! I look forward to A-OK Detroit becoming an annual signature interfaith/intercultural event in Metro Detroit!!

 

Here’s the link to a short video about A-OK Detroit!!

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxsBQAr-VDE

 

Wisdom sisters at AOK

WISDOM Friends and Board Members at A-OK Detroit

Below are some links to articles – some with video! Check them out. 

1) Women Transcending Boundaries – a sister women’s interfaith group to WISDOM, are featured on PBS for their efforts in the 10 years since 9/11.

http://www.pbs.org/wnet/religionandethics/episodes/september-2-2011/interfaith-relations-ten-years-later/9416/

 

2) Keller church’s event draws 1,500 Muslims, 1,000 Christians

 

A neighbor can be a Muslim “and still be my friend,” said Pastor Bob Roberts Jr. of NorthWood Church. Roberts was surprised by the number of friends who showed up Sunday for the church’s Building Bridges with Fellow Texans event.

“We had a goal of 1,000 Christians and 1,000 Muslims,” he said. “We ended up with 1,500 Muslims and 1,000 Christians.” Folks were standing against the walls of the 2,000-seat sanctuary, and monitors were set up in the foyer, where at least 400 others stood, said Paul Schneider, a NorthWood spokesman.

Roberts said NorthWood had considered having the event on the previous Sunday, Sept. 11, but the Muslims helping organize the gathering asked to put it off for a week. “The more we thought about it the more sense it made,” Roberts said.

The 10th anniversary of 9-11 inspired NorthWood members to invite Muslims — and Christians from other churches — to their sanctuary. But making the Muslims feel uncomfortable would have defeated the purpose, Roberts said.

 

To read more please go to the following website:

 

http://www.star-telegram.com/2011/09/23/v-print/3391807/keller-churchs-event-draws-1500.html

 

3) Phyllis Rodriguez lost her son Greg in the attack on the World Trade Center. In the years since that terrible loss, she has formed what many consider to be an unusual friendship with Aicha el-Wafi, the mother of Zacarias Moussaoui, who was convicted of playing a large role in the attacks. He is currently serving a life sentence for his crimes. See video link below.

http://news.yahoo.com/an-unlikely-friendship.html

 

4) Caste-Aways: Hinduism and Social Discrimination

Hindu American Foundation’s Swaminathan Venkataraman discusses a new report on the history and practice of caste-based discrimination – and why it has no viable place in the Hindu tradition.

 

http://www.patheos.com/Resources/Additional-Resources/Caste-Aways-Hinduism-and-Social-Discrimination-Patton-Dodd-08-21-2011.html

 

5. Launching Claremont Lincoln University – A Watershed Moment in Theological Education by Paul Chaffee

 

On September 6, 2011, Claremont School of Theology, a distinguished United Methodist seminary with roots back to 1885, joined in partnership with The Academy for Jewish Religion, California, and the Islamic Center of Southern California/Bayan College. Together, they and a number of other affiliates have joined to create Claremont Lincoln University (CLU), an institution like none other. Training imams, pastors, and rabbis will be a core goal at CLU. Seminarians will have separate curricula and degree programs for clergy formation, part of a larger set of offerings and degree options focused on the interdisciplinary, intercultural, and multireligious needs of the world in the 21st century.

Flowers Aren't Enough
Let’s Talk About God:
A Call to Interfaith Dialogue

Opening conversations with people of other faiths is becoming increasingly urgent in a world where people act out their religious prejudices by killing innocents and engaging in other terrorist acts of wanton human destruction. The recent tragedy in Norway reveals the horrors that can be done in the name of faith. Such episodes cause all of us to shudder, wondering how our distorted and sometimes twisted confessions of faith can contribute to such malicious, even psychotic behavior.

The church cannot afford to brush aside these episodes, shaking our heads in disbelief. We, the Christian church, this community of devout believers who believe Jesus is the way, must enter this treacherous territory of confronting the evil that is being sown abroad in the name of God. If we fail to speak, we become complicit in contributing to the abuse of religion and failing to take responsibility for the evils being perpetuated in the name of the faith we affirm.

At the outset, we should set aside the notion that our own faithfulness can be demonstrated by rejecting the legitimacy or integrity of other faiths. The plurality of faiths will not disappear if we simply ignore them. It is foolish to think that God has taken up residence only in our own religion and acts with anger or judgment toward all others. Such a myopic view represents a religion that has been overtaken by narcissism.

God is the God of all people. God’s light shines upon all people. As Christians, our confessions should not be used to assert any limitation on the will or the voice or the intervention of God in human affairs. Insecurity in our own beliefs is the chief culprit that causes us to feel that we need to overturn the validity of another’s faith in order to be sure of our own. While we can only speak from where we stand, we should leave every other believer free to do the same. We are neither wise enough nor good enough to judge the faith of another.

Christian belief, then, is not about claiming absolute certainty or giving unencumbered allegiance to the doctrines of our faith. Belief is not a set of facts to affirm, but a commitment to make. When we say “Jesus Christ is Lord,” we are not stating a fact; we are making a commitment to follow Jesus. As followers of Jesus, our commitment to Jesus as the Christ becomes the defining center of our lives. The integrity of that commitment, however, is in no way dependent upon the invalidity or the lack of integrity of someone else’s religious commitment. Our aim should not be to wage war among competing commitments. Both reason and good faith point us in a different direction. Grace will be more powerful than war. Thoughtful conversation will be more productive than religious bullying.

If we are to cultivate serious interfaith conversations, we should realize that understanding begins with listening, not talking. If as congregations of faith we are confident and committed in our own belief, how do we begin to reach out to neighbors who embrace other faiths? If we are able to convert our anxiety and distrust into friendship and understanding, we will have taken a giant step toward peace and building a framework for hope in the world. Jesus embraced and affirmed the worth of people whether they followed him or not. Passing baskets of “loaves and fishes” was not preceded by an altar call. We should feed one another and ask questions later.

Small Leaps of FaithJews, Christians, Muslims come together, hoping to fight fear with familiarity. How it’s playing out in Syracuse.By LAURIE GOODSTEIN

 

When Betsy Wiggins opened her front door and saw the woman in a full black face veil coming up her flower-lined walkway, she wondered if she had done the right thing.

It was 11 days after 9/11, and Mrs. Wiggins, a speech pathologist and the wife of a Methodist minister in Syracuse, had called the local mosque and invited a Muslim woman she did not know over for coffee.

She and the Muslim woman, Danya Wellmon, a medical lab technician, sat in the Wigginses’ breakfast nook for hours and talked about their faith, their careers, their children – and their mutual despair over the terrorist attacks. They bonded that day, and decided that they should start a broader discussion. As a next step, Ms. Wellmon invited nine Muslim women, and Ms. Wiggins invited nine others (Christians, Jews, one Buddhist and an Ismaili Muslim) to join them for a potluck dinner by the big stone fireplace in the living room.

In Syracuse, as in countless other communities, 9/11 set off a phenomenon that may seem counterintuitive in an era of increasingly vocal Islamophobia. A terrorist attack that provoked widespread distrust and hostility toward Muslims also brought Muslims in from the margins of American religious life – into living rooms, churches, synagogues and offices where they had never set foot before.

American Christians and Jews reached out to better understand Islam and – they will admit – to find out firsthand whether the Muslims in their midst were friends or foes. Muslims also reached out, newly conscious of their insularity, aware of the suspicions of their neighbors, determined that the ambassadors of Islam should not be the terrorists.

“Before 9/11 we were somewhat timid,” said Saad Sahraoui, president of the Islamic Society of Central New York, the largest mosque in Syracuse, when the attacks occurred in 2001. “We just kept to ourselves, just concerned with our families and our children.

“Sept. 11 changed the whole thing,” he said, and hesitated before adding, worried it could be misconstrued, “but the change was in some ways positive.”

In the months and years after 9/11, in communities large and small, mosques opened their doors for Friday prayers and iftar dinners to break the Ramadan fast. Churches and synagogues deluged imams with speaking requests. Muslim, Jewish and Christian performers hit the clubs on comedy tours.

“There are so many interfaith councils and projects now, we can’t even keep track,” said Bettina Gray, chairwoman of the North American Interfaith Network. “From the Muslim side, there’s more incentive to work with the broader community, and there’s more receptiveness from the Christian and Jewish side.”

In Syracuse, like most other places, the road to interfaith understanding was full of bumps. When Ms. Wellmon tried finding nine Muslim women to join her, she said she had to “browbeat” some of them into it. As a white convert, Ms. Wellmon did not find it a stretch to have coffee with Mrs. Wiggins. But the other women in the mosque were immigrants from the Middle East, Asia and Africa, and were not accustomed to speaking with outsiders about their religion.

Also, they were scared. After 9/11, Muslims in head scarves were harassed on the streets. The Islamic Society in Syracuse received threatening telephone messages. Thirty miles to the north, an eclectic Sikh temple called Gobind Sadan was burned down by four teenagers who thought that the turbaned worshippers were Muslims and that the temple’s sign said “Go Bin Laden.”

“There was this fear, all this backlash was coming at us,” Ms. Wellmon said. “But I had built a relationship with the women in the mosque early on, and they knew I was not going to put them into a situation that was hostile.”

They began by talking about the Koran and Islamic rituals, but they soon found themselves in intimate discussions about how they pray, what they believe about birth and death, why they do or don’t wear head scarves. It was hard for the group’s feminists to reconcile their assumptions about Islamic oppression of women with the room full of dynamic, assertive, educated Muslim women.

“I think we had seven meetings about the veil,” Mrs. Wiggins said. “We finally got over the veil.”

The group outgrew Mrs. Wiggins’s living room and took on the name Women Transcending Boundaries. Soon, the group was organizing international dinners to raise money for girls’ schools in Pakistan. Members volunteered to teach English and sewing skills at a center for immigrants and refugees. They organized a community walk that they called Journey to the Tent of Abraham, with stops along the way at churches, a synagogue and a mosque. They turned a vacant lot into a garden where immigrants from Myanmar, Vietnam and Burundi grow vegetables.

“We didn’t want to just have tea and crumpets,” Mrs. Wiggins said. “We wanted to do something positive.”

When Ms. Wellmon’s 21-year-old daughter, Sara, drove off a decrepit bridge and drowned in the icy Erie Canal in February 2003, women of many faiths filled the funeral at the mosque.

But their relationships were soon tested when state and federal agents descended on Muslim homes and businesses in the Syracuse area and questioned 150 people. The raid resulted in the indictments of Dr. Rafil A. Dhafir, a Muslim oncologist who employed Ms. Wellmon, and three others on charges of sending funds to Iraq in violation of the embargo.

At the trial, women from the interfaith group joined the doctor’s supporters in the courtroom. When he was convicted, on charges of Medicare fraud and misappropriating funds from a charity he ran, the community was divided.

Some Muslim members of Women Transcending Boundaries say they felt betrayed when the group decided not to co-sponsor Muslim Solidarity Day a few years later on the anniversary of the raid. The women who objected to sponsoring the event said it had become too political and even anti-F.B.I., and by then the group had decided to avoid taking political stands.

“I was optimistic after 9/11 that we can educate people, but now I feel we are giving our rights away in the name of security,” said Magda Bayoumi, a Muslim founder of the women’s group who has shifted her energies to other endeavors.

This weekend, on the anniversary of the attacks, Women Transcending Boundaries is conducting the second annual A-OK! Weekend, a mobilization of volunteers in hundreds of projects all over the city. Women’s interfaith groups have also organized A-OK! weekends in Detroit and Orange County, Calif.

The undertaking required hours of meetings, thousands of e-mails and plenty of arguing. In the middle of an interminable debate over the logo design, Joy Pople, the Syracuse group’s vice president, had an epiphany.

“I didn’t even look around the room and say to myself, you’re Muslim and you’re Christian,” she said. “I just forgot.”

A SPIRIT OF ASSISI CELEBRATION

AT THE SONG AND SPIRIT INSTITUTE FOR PEACE

OCTOBER 27TH -29TH

The Song and Spirit Institute for Peace and its partners in faith throughout metro Detroit are proud to announce a Spirit of Assisi celebration, Thursday-Saturday, October 27-29, 2011. Commemorating the 25th anniversary of Pope John Paul II’s historic 1986 gathering of leaders of all faiths in Assisi, Italy to pray together for peace, we join in cooperation with the Archdiocese of Detroit, and with the support of area churches, synagogues, mosques, temples and other interfaith organizations, in a peace-filled dialogue – a cultural and spiritual exchange – with our brothers and sisters from a variety of faith communities.

Thursday, October 27, at 1:30 p.m. the Archdiocese of Detroit will host Pilgrims for Peace at St. Fabian Catholic Church, 32200 W. 12 Mile Rd, Farmington Hills, MI.

Religious leaders from Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, Orthodox (Christian), Protestant, Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh and other communities will be on hand to present documents and statements on world peace. This will also include a Peace presentation from area schoolchildren and music performance from Song and Spirit, featuring Jewish and Franciscan story-telling/song-writing duo, Maggid Steve Klaper and Bro. Al Mascia, OFM.

Pilgrims for Peace

 

Contact: Michael W. Hovey, Coordinator, AOD Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations,

Phone: (313) 237-4678 – email: hovey.michael@aod.org

 

Friday October 28, at 7:30 p.m., we welcome the entire interfaith community to Reform/Renewal-style Jewish Sabbath services at Congregation Shir Tikvah, 3900 Northfield Parkway, Troy, MI. Rabbi Arnie Sleutelberg and Maggid Steve Klaper will be joined by New York-based Cantor Ellen Dreskin, a nationally known Jewish teacher, program leader and musician. Refreshments to follow.

 

Jewish Sabbath Worship contact: Maggid Steve Klaper, Song and Spirit, ph. 248-895-3011

email: songandspirit@gmail.com

 

Saturday, October 29, 10:00 am – 4:00 p.m. we will host study sessions, storytelling, classes, and discussions with local

Jewish, Muslim and Franciscan teachers at the Song and Spirit Institute for Peace, 2599 Harvard, Berkley, MI.

 

Saturday sessions contact:Brother Al Mascia, OFM, Song and Spirit, ph. 313-320-0548 – email: alofm@hotmail.com

 

Saturday evening at 7:00 p.m., we will present a musical program at St. Hugo of the Hills, 2215 Opdyke Road, Bloomfield Hills, with a community interfaith choir, followed by a Song and Spirit concert, featuring Maggid Steve Klaper and Bro. Al Mascia, OFM.

 

Saturday evening program contact: Maggid Steve Klaper, Song and Spirit, ph. 248-895-3011 email: songandspirit@gmail.com

 

All events are free of charge and open to the public. More details regarding Pilgrims for Peace participants and teachers and session leaders for Saturday morning and afternoon will be announced. It is our hope that these exciting, insightful and uplifting activities will build bridges of faith and understanding within our diverse communities. On its 25 anniversary, we embrace The Spirit of Assisi as an example to be embodied — a guiding force to heal a broken world, to complete that which cries for completion, to bring Shalom/Salaam to the world.

On 9/11 Padma Kuppa, WISDOM Board member
and charter member of the City of Troy’s Ethnic Advisory Board,
wrote an article in the Detroit Free Press.
Padma Kuppa
What happened on 9/11, and in any instance where religion is called into play, teaches us that faith is something that has the potential to divide or unite. It is in us to choose the latter to make a more peaceful world for ourselves, by learning more about our neighbors and examining our own belief systems. To that end, 9/11 had a domino effect on my life. I became a charter member of the City of Tory’s Ethnic Issues Advisory Board, formed as a response to enhance relationships within our diverse, often self-segregated community. I helped to form the Troy-area Interfaith Group because we wanted to make the National Day of Prayer celebration inclusive of non-Christian faiths. In doing so, I deepened my owh faith by “being interfaith.”
 
While 9/11 is past and we deal with other aftermaths – tsunamis, hurricanes or genocides like in Darfur – the need to continue to build community, in our country and the world over, is something ever present. Globalization, economic hardship and belief in rleigious or national superiority need to be overcome through friendship, understanding and living the Golden Rule. Pluralism has become a verb for me, as I advocate for the religious freedome embedded in our Constitution and the Hindu principle that all of creation is one family.
A Muslim and a Jewish womanform a wonderful friendship

 

A Tale of Two Sisters: Najeeba Syeed-Miller’s Story http://www.feminist.com/ourinnerlives/features_two_sisters_najeeba1.html

A Tale of Two Sisters: Rachel Goldstein’s Story

http://www.feminist.com/ourinnerlives/features_two_sisters_rachel1.html

 

 

Muslim Woman To Lead College Holocaust Center

Critics question credibility of Manhattan College’s pick, and a change in center’s focus as supporters come to her defense.

 

Manhattan College is revamping its Holocaust Center to include the further study of other genocides, as well as interfaith activities that would include Islam alongside Judaism and Christianity – the two religions that until now have been mostly alone at the core of Holocaust interfaith issues.

Perhaps nothing accentuates the change more than the appointment of Mehnaz Afridi, 40, to be director of what will be renamed the Holocaust, Genocide and Interfaith Education Center.

Afridi, a Pakistan-born Muslim woman, has been teaching at Antioch University, and her writings have primarily focused on Muslim identity and the intersection of Islam and the Holocaust.

Afridi is awaiting publication of her first book, “The Shoah Through Muslim Eyes.” The book, Afridi told The Jewish Week, grew out of “my frustration with the anti-Semitism within the Muslim community, its lack of education, [its] denial of the Holocaust, or those that say it wasn’t six million but two million. Negating someone’s history or someone’s truth is actually quite a huge sin.”

 

Read the rest of the article by going to the website below:

 

http://www.thejewishweek.com/news/new_york/muslim_woman_lead_college_holocaust_center

Women, War & Peace Coming to PBS in November!!

 

Women, War, & Peace is a bold new five-part PBS television series challenging the conventional wisdom that war and peace are men’s domain. The vast majority of today’s conflicts are not fought by nation states and their armies, but rather by informal entities: gangs and warlords using small arms and improvised weapons. The series reveals how the post-Cold War proliferation of small arms has changed the landscape of war, with women becoming primary targets and suffering unprecedented casualties. Yet they are simultaneously emerging as necessary partners in brokering lasting peace and as leaders in forging new international laws governing conflict. With depth and complexity, Women, War & Peace spotlights the stories of women in conflict zones from Bosnia to Afghanistan and Colombia to Liberia, placing women at the center of an urgent dialogue about conflict and security, and reframing our understanding of modern warfare.

 

Featuring narrators Matt Damon, Tilda Swinton, Geena Davis and Alfre Woodard, Women, War & Peace is the most comprehensive global media initiative ever mounted on the roles of women in war and peace. The series will present its groundbreaking message across the globe by utilizing all forms of media, including U.S. and international primetime television, radio, print, web, and worldwide community screenings, and will be accompanied by an educational and outreach initiative designed to advance international accountability in regard to women and security. Women, War & Peace is a co-production of THIRTEEN and Fork Films.

Women, War & Peace will premiere in Detroit on our local PBS station Tuesday nights at 11:00 PM for an hour between Oct. 11 and Nov. 8, 2011.

 

WISDOM along the with Diversity Task Force will be showing “Pray the Devil Back to Hell” on January 11th at the Birmingham Community House at 6:30 PM!!

 

The five episodes in the series:

I Came to Testify ( October 11th) is the moving story of how a group of 16 women who had been imprisoned and raped by Serb-led forces in the Bosnian town of Foca broke history’s great silence – and stepped forward to take the witness stand in an international court of law. Their remarkable courage resulted in a triumphant verdict that led to new international laws about sexual violence in war.

 

Pray the Devil Back to Hell (October 18) is the astonishing story of the Liberian women who took on the warlords and regime of dictator Charles Taylor in the midst of a brutal civil war, and won a once unimaginable peace for their shattered country in 2003.

When the U.S. troop surge was announced in late 2009, women in Afghanistan knew that the ground was being laid for peace talks with the Taliban.

 

Peace Unveiled ( October 25th) follows three women in Afghanistan who are risking their lives to make sure that women’s rights don’t get traded away in the deal.

 

The War We Are Living ( November 1st) travels to Cauca, a mountainous region in Colombia’s Pacific southwest, where two extraordinary Afro-Colombian women are braving a violent struggle over their gold-rich lands. They are standing up for a generation of Colombians who have been terrorized and forcibly displaced as a deliberate strategy of war.

 

War Redefined, November 8th) the capstone of Women, War & Peace, challenges the conventional wisdom that war and peace are men’s domain through incisive interviews with leading thinkers, Secretaries of State and seasoned survivors of war and peace-making. Interviewees include Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; Liberian peace activist Leymah Gbowee; Bosnian war crimes investigator Fadila Memisevic; and globalization expert Moisés Naím.

 

Five Women Five Journeys: How Different Are We?
WISDOM Women together

This unique WISDOM program features personal stories of women of different faith traditions – how their childhood impacted their beliefs today, what the challenges are for women in their faith tradition, what parts of their religion are misunderstood, how reaching out to someone from a different faith has enriched their lives.
To inquire about a Five Women Five Journeys Program for your organization, contact Elaine Schonberger at bookfairmama@comcast.net or Paula Drewek at Drewekpau@aol.com .
Check out the latest story about a friendship that crosses religion, race, or ethnic boundaries at www.friendshipandfaith.com.
Email Gail Katz at gailkatz@comcast.net if you have a personal story for the friendshipandfaith.com website!!
LINKS THAT YOU CAN USE FOR MORE INFORMATION!!

1) Go to http://www.readthespirit.com/religious-holidays-festivals/ for fascinating information about upcoming Religious holidays that your neighbors of different faith traditions may be celebrating!!

2) Go to http://www.readthespirit.com/were-making-news/ for a listing of all the articles written about the WISDOM Book Friendship and Faith: the WISDOM of Women Creating Alliances for Peace.

Go to our WISDOM websites at www.interfaithwisdom.org

Read our interfaith story of the week from our book Friendship and Faith,

and find the link to buy the book at

Amazon at

Contact Information

 

Gail Katz gailkatz@comcast.net
phone: 248-978-6664

Join Our Mailing List

BECOME A FRIEND OF WISDOM! Click on this link to go to the WISDOM website (right side of home page) to print out form to support WISDOM.

WISDOM Newsletter – Sep 14, 2011 Special

Written by WISDOM on . Posted in Newsletters

A SPECIAL WISDOM WINDOW
ABOUT OUR
SEPTEMBER 14th
Film Discussion Event
Please join WISDOM at the
Birmingham Community House

 

WISDOM
 September 14th Film Discussion

 

Five Women Five Journeys: How Different Are We?
WISDOM Women together

This unique WISDOM program features personal stories of women of different faith traditions – how their childhood impacted their beliefs today, what the challenges are for women in their faith tradition, what parts of their religion are misunderstood, how reaching out to someone from a different faith has enriched their lives.
To inquire about a Five Women Five Journeys Program for your organization, contact Elaine Schonberger at bookfairmama@comcast.net or Paula Drewek at Drewekpau@aol.com .
Check out the latest story about a friendship that crosses religion, race, or ethnic boundaries at www.friendshipandfaith.com.
Email Gail Katz at gailkatz@comcast.net if you have a personal story for the friendshipandfaith.com website!!
LINKS THAT YOU CAN USE FOR MORE INFORMATION!!

1) Go to http://www.readthespirit.com/religious-holidays-festivals/ for fascinating information about upcoming Religious holidays that your neighbors of different faith traditions may be celebrating!!

2) Go to http://www.readthespirit.com/were-making-news/ for a listing of all the articles written about the WISDOM Book Friendship and Faith: the WISDOM of Women Creating Alliances for Peace.

Go to our WISDOM websites at www.interfaithwisdom.org

Read our interfaith story of the week from our book Friendship and Faith,

and find the link to buy the book at

Amazon at

Contact Information

 

Gail Katz gailkatz@comcast.net
phone: 248-978-6664

 

Join Our Mailing List 

BECOME A FRIEND OF WISDOM! Click on this link to go to the WISDOM website (right side of home page) to print out form to support WISDOM.

WISDOM Newsletter – Sep 11, 2011 Special

Written by WISDOM on . Posted in Newsletters

A SPECIAL WISDOM WINDOW
ABOUT THE ACTS OF KINDNESS DETROIT
COMMUNITY SERVICE EVENT
SEPTEMBER 11, 2011

 

WISDOM
 ACTS OF KINDNESS (A-OK) DETROIT

A DAY OF COMMUNITY SERVICE

AND DIALOGUE

ON THE TENTH ANNIVERSARY OF 9/11

AT FOCUS: HOPE IN DETROIT

1355 Oakman Boulevard
Detroit, MI 48238-2881
(313) 494-5500

 

PLEASE SUPPORT THIS OPPORTUNITY

TO COME TOGETHER TO CELEBRATE OUR DIVERSITY

AND WORK TO MAKE OUR COMMUNITY

A BETTER PLACE TO LIVE.

 

Wear RED, WHITE, or BLUE

Clothing to this 9/11 Event

 

To register for AOK Detroit

Go to

http://www.usrising.org/serviceday.php

 

You will receive an email confirmation

after you register with detailed information

about our September 11th A-OK event!!

 

Donations to support this 9/11 A-OK event

would be greatly appreciated to help us pay for supplies and food for our volunteers!!

See Below!!

 

A-OK Flyer Revised

 

 

 

 

A-OK Detroit on 9/11Breakdown of the Day’s Agenda!!

 

For folks working on the outdoor beautification projects near Focus: Hope or in the Food Pantry Warehouse at Focus: HOPE

 

12:00 PM – 1:00 PM – Check in and get project assignments

1:00 – 1:30 PM – Kick Off Rally –

2:00 – 4:00 PM – Community Service Projects

4:00 – 5:15 PM – Get Refreshments in Cafeteria and Participate in the “Get to Know You” Dialogue in Focus: HOPE Conference Rooms

 

For our teens and adults working on the indoor projects (backpacks for Detroit Public School students, kits for DPS teachers, and writing letters to our troops)

 

12:00 PM – 1:00 PM – Check in and get project assignments

1:00 – 1:30 PM – Kick Off Rally

2:00 – 3:00 PM Community Service Projects

3:00 – 4:00 PM “Get to Know You” Dialogue

4:00 – 5:15 PM – Refreshments in Cafeteria and Conversation

 

Questions? Contact Gail Katz, gailkatz@comcast.net, 248-978-6664

 

Metro Detroit community groups transform 9/11 anniversary with ‘acts of kindness’Multicultural groups work side by side

in spirit of hope, harmony and unity

 

Press Release!!

 

DETROIT—-Major community leaders and organizations have joined to mark the tenth anniversary of 9/11 with a day of community service and intercultural connection called A-OK (Acts of Kindness) Detroit

 

A-OK Detroit aims to transform 9/11 into a day of caring and service by bringing together diverse community groups with common missions of unity, peace, and mutual understanding.

On September 11, volunteers from ACCESS, Women’s Interfaith Solutions for Dialogue and Outreach in MetroDetroit (WISDOM), the Interfaith Leadership Council of Metropolitan Detroit, the Council of Islamic Organizations of Michigan, City Year Detroit, United Way, and J-Serve will come together in service activities focused around Focus:HOPE’s campus and its food outreach, education and community revitalization efforts.

“The Acts of Kindness (A-OK) mission is to transform 9/11 into a day for people to work side by side to make their community a better place to live,” said Gail Katz, co-founder of WISDOM and a board member of the Interfaith Leadership Council. Katz was a leader in launching the A-OK Detroit last year with more than 400 volunteers working on a number of projects in southwest Detroit.

“With this new approach, 9/11 becomes a day to find our commonality as human beings. As we work together, we reduce myths and stereotypes about the ‘other’ and increase respect and understanding,” she said. “We must continue to maintain our relationships and move forward-getting more people together to talk, perform community service together, and find out what we all have in common.”

“We want to make sure that we keep this message going long in the future, not just one day a year, but as a way of life,” according to Hassan Jaber, executive director of ACCESS. “When young people work side by side with those from different cultures and backgrounds, they have a wonderful way of focusing not on their differences but on their commonalities. In this way, our young people become examples for all of us, leading us forward into a brighter future.”

“This special day of service shows both the power and the beauty of people from different backgrounds working together in a spirit of harmony and unity,” said Focus:HOPE CEO William F. Jones Jr. “It is an honor for Focus:HOPE to host Acts of Kindness Detroit. My hope and belief is that this day will advance the effort to build a metropolitan community of people who respect and embrace our differences and our similarities.”

 As we approach the tenth anniversary of 9/11, we would like to offer you an opportunity to join with others in creating a prayer of hope for our future.

In May, WISDOM women created a beautiful prayer that dealt with diversity in response to the words “Open my eyes to …,” which may be viewed on our website at www.interfaithwisdom.org. We would like to use a similar format to create prayers of hope for our nation and our world in honor of the upcoming commemoration of 9/11 in the spirit of remembrance and renewal.

Just complete the line:

” I hope for a world where …”

and email your response to David Crumm at david.crumm@gmail.com by August 31st and look for these prayers on www.readthespirit.com and www.interfaithwisdom.org around Sunday, September 11th.

Please identify your prayer as a WISDOM response, since we will have other prayers from other organizations that will be participating in the Acts of Kindness (A-OK) Detroit event down at Focus: HOPE that WISDOM is co-sponsoring on Sunday, September 11th.

Five Women Five Journeys: How Different Are We?
WISDOM Women together

This unique WISDOM program features personal stories of women of different faith traditions – how their childhood impacted their beliefs today, what the challenges are for women in their faith tradition, what parts of their religion are misunderstood, how reaching out to someone from a different faith has enriched their lives.
To inquire about a Five Women Five Journeys Program for your organization, contact Elaine Schonberger at bookfairmama@comcast.net or Paula Drewek at Drewekpau@aol.com .
Check out the latest story about a friendship that crosses religion, race, or ethnic boundaries at www.friendshipandfaith.com.
Email Gail Katz at gailkatz@comcast.net if you have a personal story for the friendshipandfaith.com website!!
LINKS THAT YOU CAN USE FOR MORE INFORMATION!!

1) Go to http://www.readthespirit.com/religious-holidays-festivals/ for fascinating information about upcoming Religious holidays that your neighbors of different faith traditions may be celebrating!!

2) Go to http://www.readthespirit.com/were-making-news/ for a listing of all the articles written about the WISDOM Book Friendship and Faith: the WISDOM of Women Creating Alliances for Peace.

Go to our WISDOM websites at www.interfaithwisdom.org

Read our interfaith story of the week from our book Friendship and Faith,

and find the link to buy the book at

Amazon at

 
Contact Information

 

Gail Katz gailkatz@comcast.net
phone: 248-978-6664

Join Our Mailing List

BECOME A FRIEND OF WISDOM! Click on this link to go to the WISDOM website (right side of home page) to print out form to support WISDOM.

WISDOM Mission Statement

To Provide concrete modeling of women from different faith traditions working together in harmony for the common good.
To Empower women to take a more active role in furthering social justice and world peace.
To Dispel myths, stereotypes, prejudices and fear about faith traditions different from our own.
To Nurture the growth of empathy and spiritual energy that result from our projects and interfaith dialogue.