WISDOM Newsletter – Feb 9, 2012 Special

Written by WISDOM on . Posted in Newsletters


FEBRUARY 9, 2012








the interfaith community of Metropolitan Detroit

will show their solidarity

by coming together to protest the

defacing of the Sikh Gurdwara

which is located on

14 mile and Dequindre

(north of 14 on the east side of Dequindre )
33340 Dequindre road, Sterling Heights, Mi 48310


The press will be in attendance.

WISDOM reps will be at this conference and will read the statement included below.


Please join us if you are able!!


Call Gail Katz at 248-978-6664


Sikh House of Worship Vandalized in Sterling Heights

with Anti-Muslim Graffiti

By Niraj Warikoo – Detroit Free Press


A Sikh house of worship in Sterling Heights under construction was vandalized with what appears to be anti-Muslim graffiti.


The Sikh building, known as a gurdwara, was defaced sometime between Sunday evening and Monday morning, a Sikh advocacy group said today. Some of the graffiti reads: “Don’t Builed” and “Mohmed,” which seems to refer to Islam’s prophet, Mohammed. The graffiti also included a Christian cross, a pistol, and the letters R and A. It’s unclear what the letters refer to.

In the West, Sikh men are sometimes confused for being Muslim because they wear full beards and turbans. Over the past ten years, some Sikhs in the U.S. have been victims of violent bias attacks because they’re wrongly perceived to be Muslim. Based in India, Sikhism arose about 300 years ago and now has about 25 million adherents.


Jasjit Singh of the Sikh American Legal Defense Education Fund, said: “attacks and vandalism against any of the nation’s houses of worship must be condemned by all Americans.”

Singh asked anyone who has information about the incident to call Sterling Heights police at (586) 446-2800. The Sikh house of worship is on Dequindre Rd. just north of 14 Mile.

Singh added: “We call upon local and federal law enforcement agencies to rightfully classify this incident as a hate crime.”


The Michigan chapters of the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the American Jewish Committee also condemned the vandalism.

“We condemn the vandalism of the Sikh house of worship in Sterling Heights and call on local and federal law enforcement to use their full resources to apprehend the perpetrators of this hate crime,” said Dawud Walid, executive director of the Muslim council.


“The attack on any house of worship in our community is despicable, and we are pained to see the Sikh community targeted,” said Kari Alterman of the Jewish committee. We look to law enforcement to investigate this act, and arrest those responsible.”

WISDOM’s Response to the Desecration

of the Sikh Gurdwara in Sterling Heights

Friday, February 10, 2012

The Women of WISDOM (Women’s Interfaith Solutions for Dialogue and Outreach in MetroDetroit) take a stand against the terrible vandalism done to the Sikh Gurdwara in Sterling Heights. As women of many faith traditions, ethnicities and races, working together to break down myths and stereotypes and build respect and understanding, we stand together in condemning the actions of those who spew hate and fear and who desecrate holy places. We call on people to remember the Golden Rule and to treat others as we would want them to treat us. We stand together to affirm our vision of a Metro Detroit community where all our diverse religious and ethnic groups are treated with dignity. Our diversity serves to strengthen our community’s resources and provides an important model of cooperation for our children and others in this nation and abroad. An attack on any ethnic or religious group is an attack on all of humanity.


Signed by:


Paula Drewek, President

Trish Harris, Vice President and Co-Founder

Fran Hildebrandt, Vice President

Anjali Vale, Secretary

Gail Katz, Immediate Past President and Co-Founder


(The WISDOM Executive Board on behalf of all the women of WISDOM)


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!!


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


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

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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.


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WISDOM’s challenge is to bring together people from different faith traditions, ethnicities, races, and cultures in an atmosphere of safety and respect to engage in educational and community service projects. Let’s change our world through the positive power of building relationships!