Compassion Games Challenge for World Interfaith Harmony Week

World Interfaith Harmony Week

Every year the first week of February has been designated by the United Nations since 2010 as a week to showcase and celebrate the ongoing work of interreligious harmony and peacemaking. Groups and individuals are encouraged to sponsor events during this week and to share the information on the World Interfaith Harmony Week website.

Compassion GamesThis year, the Silicon Valley Interreligious Council (SiVIC), a URI Cooperation Circle, is partnering with the Compassion Games‘ Interfaith League to bring the UN World Interfaith Harmony Week Co-opetition to life. SiVIC is participating in the Compassion Games and challenges all URI CC’s to join them to be the most compassionate URI Cooperation Circle…… Game On!

Keep the Dream Alive

In celebration of the signing of the United Nations Charter in San Francisco 1945, The United Nations Association Of San Francisco (UNA-SF) will co-host a free and historic event that will include speakers, educational workshops, and a special concert, “The Way Chose You” inspired by Dag Hammarskjöld’s spiritual journal “Markings,” and performed by the Swedish Choir Kloster Vocalis and other performers.
The 15th Anniversary of the United Religions Initiative will also be folded into this event, which will be held at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco. The event will hold up the Sustainable Development Goals and encourage a season of peace education about UN values from June through October. It will also incorporate artistic gifts honoring the depth and global commitments of the late United Nations Secretary General Dag Hammarskjöld. The gathering will be a step in a journey of peace making in order to keep the dream alive. Shared educational programs will follow.
Registration is free (click the link below) but seating is limited to 1000 people so please register early. Donations will be gratefully accepted.

May Peace Prevail on Earth: An Interfaith Christmas Special

Experience a Christmas Eve Celebration like you’ve never seen before! Tune in on Thursday, December 24 to your local CBS station at 11:35pm (Eastern Time) for “May Peace Prevail on Earth: A URI Interfaith Christmas Special.” Friends outside of the USA are invited to watch the program via starting at 8:35 pm Pacific Time.
In the Bay Area, the program will be broadcast on KPIX, channel 5, at 11:35 pm on the 24th.
“At a time when horrific violence in the name of religion dominates the news,
and  prejudice and intolerance threaten to undermine our diverse communities, the world needs to know that peace among religions is possible in our communities, in our country and in our world,” said the Rev. Victor Kazanjian, Executive Director of the United Religions Initiative.
Coming together to create this Interfaith Christmas Special are leaders from Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, the Middle East, and North and South America, representing Baha’i, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Humanist, Indigenous, Jain, Jewish, Muslim, Native American, Sikh, Shinto and Unitarian Universalist traditions.
This program features:
  • An interfaith Christmas Eve celebration from St. Gregory’s of Nyssa Church in San Francisco, CA
  • Voices from people of different religions from around the world
  • Stories of peacebuilding from conflict areas including the Middle East and Western Africa

SiVIC is a Cooperating Circle of the United Religions Initiative.

Teens visit United Nations

Shayda Sales participated in the Silicon Valley Teen Interfaith Leadership Council. In February, she traveled to the United Nations as part of World Interfaith Harmony Week. She created a video that briefly shows some of the experiences she and three other teens from United Religions Initiative Cooperation Circles enjoyed.

Read more about the teens and their trip:

Interfaith 101: First Steps in Building Interfaith Relations

Interested in interfaith engagement? Not sure where to begin? Looking to further develop your interfaith initiatives?

Join Islamic Networks Group’s Know Your Neighbor: Multifaith Encounters for a free webinar where prominent interfaith organizations give their tips and tricks for interfaith efforts, such as sharing tools for starting an interfaith group and ways to foster ongoing interfaith efforts.

We will be joined by representatives of Interfaith Youth Core, United Religions Initiative–North America and Spokane Interfaith Council.

Kate Chance – Interfaith Coordinator of Islamic Networks Group

Megan Lane — Co-Curricular Partnerships Manager of Interfaith Youth Core
Sari Heidenreich — Regional Coordinator for United Religions Initiative–North America
Skyler Oberst — President of Spokane Interfaith Council


An Interview with Girish Shah

The United Religions Initiative recently interviewed Girish Shah, founding member and Treasurer of SiVIC for a recent profile: “3 followers of Eastern Traditions engaged in interfaith work.”

Girish, a leader of the Jain Center of Northern California in Milpitas, explains how his tradition leads him into interfaith cooperation”

“The creed of Jainism is non-violence, not only in action, but in speech and thought,” Shah said. “Thought translates to speech, and speech translates to action. To stop the violent action, we need to start with our thoughts. ”

Girish Shah

Girish Shah

SiVIC is a Cooperating Circle of the United Religions Initiative, a global network of interfaith groups. Read the rest of the article, including Girish, Dr. Prem Kahlon (Sikh), and Dr. Ji Hyang Padma (Buddhist) on the URI website.