Organisations and communities encouraged to take part in Inter Faith Week
Communities across Shropshire are being encouraged to get together and take part in Inter Faith Week from Sunday 11 November to Sunday 18 November 2018.
The campaign, led by the Inter Faith Network for the UK, is being supported by Shropshire Council and faith groups across the county, and highlights the enormous contribution made by faith communities across our society and to support good relations between groups of different faiths.
The aims of the week are to:
- Strengthen good Interfaith relations at all levels
- Increase awareness of the different and distinct faith communities in the UK, celebrating and building on the contribution which their members make to the neighbourhoods and to the wider society
- Increase understanding between people of religious and non-religious beliefs.
To aid this, Shropshire Council has set up a dedicated website to help people organise any Interfaith event they may be organising. The website provides people with information on ideas for events, how to apply for road closures which is free of charge for street parties, and how to apply for licenses. You can view the website here https://shropshire.gov.uk/inter-faith-week
Building good relationships and working partnerships between people of different faiths and beliefs is part of the year-round work of many people and organisations across Shropshire.
Having a special week provides a focal point, helping to open Interfaith activity up to a wider audience so that more and more people are made aware of the importance of this vital work and are able to participate in it.
Joyce Barrow, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for communities, waste and regulatory services, said:
“It’s really important that we commend the great efforts of Interfaith groups across Shropshire who play a vital role in enriching the lives of Shropshire people.
“Inter Faith Week provides a great opportunity for different cultures and faiths to come together and celebrate the fantastic work they do in building community cohesion, tolerance, understanding and respect in our local communities.”
Clive Wright, Shropshire Council’s chief executive, added:;
“We are proud in Shropshire that we are a county of tolerance and acceptance of difference, and have a long history of caring for and promoting the interests of the vulnerable and disadvantaged.
“Many of our services work closely with our local Interfaith groups, to help enhance, strengthen and bring communities together and help improve the lives of local people.
“If you’re planning any related events in Shropshire let us know and we’ll be happy to share and promote them.”
Dr Simon Nightingale, Chair of Shropshire Humanists, added:;
“Shropshire Humanists want a world where we live together with shared human values, with respect for equality and human rights, with freedom of religion, belief or no belief, without privilege for any religion or belief and with concern for the future. To find out more visit the Shropshire Humanists website at shropshire.humanist.org.uk or the Humanists UK website at humanism.org.uk.”
Mark Michaels, Jewish Chair of South Shropshire Inter Faith and member of Shrewsbury Inter Faith, said:-
“South Shropshire Inter Faith and Shrewsbury Inter Faith support the aims of Inter Faith Week. It is so important in a rural area like ours that we take the opportunity to get to know people with a different heritage and who have different religious practices and beliefs.
“In cities we have the opportunity to rub along with those of many backgrounds in our daily lives, but here in a more rural county we must make those opportunities to enjoy the wealth of heritage that our traditions share, learn about and respect those areas where we differ, and importantly work to dispel the public myths that grow up around our differing cultures.”
Imam Sohayb Peerbhai added:-
“South Shropshire Inter Faith feels it necessary to engage locally and nationally to create a link and dialogue between communities so together we can create a harmonious society where we all feel safe.”
Inter Faith Week usually begins on Remembrance Sunday, and runs until the following Sunday. It is hoped that the additional Sunday will provide the opportunity for other weekend events to take place as well as those linked to Remembrance Sunday, this year the centenary anniversary of Armistice Day.
Organisations who are planning any related events in Shropshire via Instagram or Twitter can tag Shropshire Council @shropcouncil and we’ll be happy to share.
For more information about the campaign and to see what Interfaith events are near you click here.