Sustainable Peace and the United Nations Interfaith Harmony Month

Fr. Justin Lanier, Sr. Sahar Alsahlani, and Cantor Scott Buckner Inter-active Discussion:  February 23, 2019

Venue: Zion Episcopal Church, Manchester VT 3:00-5:00 PM

Co-organizers: St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, Bennington, VT Yale Alum Non-Profit Alliance (YANA), VT (Event listed on UN Calendar for World Interfaith Harmony)  

At the core of all the faith systems and traditions is the recognition that we are all in this together and that we need to love and to support one another to live in harmony and peace in a sustainable world. It is important to increase our efforts to spread the message of good neighborliness based on our common humanity, a message shared by all faith traditions. 

The theme for the observance of the Interfaith Harmony for 2019 is therefore “Sustainable Peace through Interfaith Harmony.”

Draft Program:  

Welcoming Remarks: Rev. John Mitchell Rector, Zion Episcopal Church   Rev. Justin Lanier Rector, St. Peter’s         Inter-Active Discussion

Moderator: Ms. Yvonne Lodico Background on GA resolution and topic for 2019 Head, Yale Alum Non-profit Alliance, (YANA) VT Chapter  

Discussants:   Rev. Justin Lanier Christianity and Buddhism Mindfulness and Sustainable Peace   Ms. Sahar Al-Shlani Al-Khoei Foundation,(New York) Islam and Inter-faith Peace   Cantor Scott Buckner Israel Congregation Judaism goals for Peace, and Inter-faith harmony   Albany Hindu Temple (Invited)      

Following an over view of points, the discussants could be asked to reflect on:   As part of the global sustainable development goals, some of the goals call for End of hunger (2); gender equality (5) and peace, justice and strong institutions (16) – how do you see Inter-faith harmony contributing to these goals?  

Nearly all conflicts currently involve discord with faith elements including: Burma/Myanmar (Buddhism and Islam), Yemen (Sunni and Shi’a Islam), Israel/Palestine (Judaism/Islam), Central Africa Republic (Christianity and Islam), and South America, now only Christian. Is it possible to bring about peace with Multi-faith engagement?  

These questions will be open for further questions and comments to attendees.   Conclusion: Rev. John Mitchell