Haven Interfaith Parents

This page is devoted to topics and issues we are discussing in our monthly HIP meetings for 2011-2012.The mission of HIP states: The Haven Interfaith Parents support the mission of Canterbury School and encourage an understanding and appreciation of all beliefs and faiths, with the goal of promoting peace in our community.

February 7, 2012

World Interfaith Harmony Week, February 5th-11th
Canterbury School parents are invited to an open house hosted by the Haven Interfaith Parents (HIP) to learn about the multi-faith efforts occurring at Canterbury School. The open house will be Tuesday, February 7th from 7-9 pm in the Haven (located in the Middle School). The HIP members will be discussing the following questions: 
  • What was the process of crafting the ground rules? Why are the ground rules important for the HIP meetings?
  • What does the statement mean, “Multi-faith dialogue is based on common ethics and the common good rather than common theology?” How is this statement reflected in the HIP meetings?
  • At the beginning of each HIP meeting is a reflective time. Tell about some of the reflective times. How does this time impact the meeting and the purpose of HIP?
  • At each HIP meeting there is an ‘activity’. Describe a few of the activities. Why are these important for the HIP meetings?
  • Why was the discussion of the topic ‘When I Die” important to you?
  • At our first meeting this fall we shared a spiritual highlight from the summer. Tell about that discussion and what it meant to you?
  • During one activity we drew a picture of a scared place and explained the picture to another member in the group. That person then shared the picture with the group. Tell about this experience and what it meant to you?
  • HIP sponsors the multi-faith events. What has been your experience at these events? Why are they important for our community?
  • Tell about why you value HIP.
  • We had a peace feast at Mezzo Grille with our families. Why was this important to do? What did it mean to you?
January 10, 2012
The January HIP meeting was different than the meetings we have had in the past. A few months ago I read about a “Peace Feast” which was started by Rick Love in Arizona. ( http://ricklove.net/?p=1058) It seemed like something that could be done in Fort Wayne. Canterbury School’s HIP group had our first Peace Feast this week. We gathered with our families at Maza Grille in Fort Wayne for dinner. (http://www.mazagrillefortwayne.com/) The owner of the restaurant was wonderful and spent time with us explaining Mediterranean food and the items on the menu. The staff was welcoming and friendly. The food was absolutely amazing. It was a wonderful evening of sharing a culture, eating great food, and deepening friendships. The friendships I have made with people from other faiths has enriched my life and deepened my faith. I am blessed.

For food in a world where many walk in hunger;
For faith in a world where many walk in fear;
For friends in a world where many walk alone;
We give you thanks, O Lord.
 Amen.Source: Huron Hunger Fund, Anglican Church of Canada

December 6, 2011
Opening reflective time: We read the ‘words of hope for those who are suffering’ from the program for the Interfaith Event. 
Unlike many other religions, Buddhism does not offer hope for salvation bestowed by a savior.  However, Buddhists believe that karma (cause and effect) guarantees that our good deeds will result in happiness.  A Buddhist believes that by taming his mind and practicing the virtues of Wisdom and Compassion, he may eventually find release from the realm of suffering and reach a state of enlightenment.

Philippians 3:7-11
"...I trust Christ to save me. For God's way of making us right with himself depends on faith.  As a result, I can really know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. I can learn what it means to suffer with him, sharing in his death, so that, somehow, I can experience the resurrection from the dead!"

Om sarveshaam svastir bhavatu - Auspiciousness  be unto all.                -         
Om sarveshaam shaantir   bhavatu -Perfect peace be unto all.
Om sarveshaam  Purnam  bhavatu - wholeness be unto all.
Om sarveshaam mangalam bhavatu - prosperity be unto all.
Quran: chapter 2 verse 155-157
"Be sure we shall test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss in goods or lives or the fruits (of your toil), but give glad tidings to those who patiently persevere * Who say, when afflicted with calamity: to God we belong and to Him is our return * They are those on whom (Descend) blessings from God, and mercy, and they are the ones that receive guidance.”

Lamenatations 3:21-25
This I reply to my heart; therefore I have hope. Verily, the kindnesses of the Lord never cease! Indeed, His mercies never fail! They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. . "The Lord is my portion," says my soul; "therefore I will hope in Him." The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the soul that seeks Him. 
II Corinthians 4:16-18
For we do not lose heart.  Even though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed every day.  For this slight momentary affliction is preparing us for an eternal weight of glory beyond all measure, because we look not at what can be seen but at what cannot be seen; for what can be seen is temporary, but what cannot be seen is eternal.

After reading the passages each person shared what they learned or how they grew spiritually from hearing the different perspectives on suffering at the  Interfaith Event.

We had an excellent discussion after reading these two articles and watching this short clip. We discussed finding a common ground among religions so our community can be inspired to work for  peace.

1.  The article by Lisa Miller states that Huston Smith believes that “all the great religions are the same.” Later in the article Stephen Prothero says that we need to “move on” from Smith’s way of thinking. What does this statement mean, to “move on”? Do you agree with Prothero?

2.  Skye Jethani has put forth that religions start from the same human experience and that religions are systems of control to ultimately relieve us of our fears.  Do you agree with his view? How does this view fit with Stephen Prothero’s statements that we need to ‘move on’?

3.  Eboo Patel acknowledges that religions have different beliefs. According to the author where should the common ground be found? Do you agree or disagree with this?

4.  What could our group do to reflect Eboo Patel’s common ground?

November 1, 2011:
Each HIP meeting is started with a Reflective Time. The members take turns leading the Reflective Time. Here is the Reflective Time:

Read the prayer out loud once.
Read the prayer again. This time after each line stop for a minute and have each participant think of a situation or person to pray for that sentence. Have the participants write it down on the paper.
Read the prayer out loud one final time.

Prayer of Saint Francis of Assisi
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury,pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen

October 11, 2011:

Seven ResolutionsAgainst Prejudice, Hatred and Discrimination
Peace Catalyst International


Questions discussed after reading:
1. Are we being ‘authentically faithful’ in what we say to each other at HIP? Where have you seen this evidenced at HIP?
2. We have become friends through meeting together. Should we be showing ‘hospitality’ to the Canterbury community? If yes, what could we do to show hospitality?
3. Are we as HIP members practicing this outside of HIP? Where is this occurring?
4. Is it important for HIP to be aware of these situations around the world? Why or why not?
5. If this is true, how can we coexist?

September 2011
This fall is the beginning of my fifth year of leading a parent interfaith group at Canterbury School, in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The name of this interfaith group is Haven Interfaith Parents (HIP). Five years ago I also started a spiritual center at the school.  The middle school students named the spiritual center, The Haven.  The parents incorporated the name of the spiritual center into the name of the interfaith group. The first HIP group met once a month for three years. During the second year of our meetings we wrote a mission statement for the group. The mission for HIP states:  The Haven Interfaith Parents support the mission of Canterbury School and encourage an understanding and appreciation of all beliefs and faiths, with the goal of promoting peace in our community. The second HIP group is starting its second year of meeting together.

1 comment:

  1. Recently I received a request for information on how to join the Haven Interfaith Parent group. In the past these groups have consisted of parents at Canterbury School in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The groups have been comprised of people from different faiths. Please contact me at Canterbury School if you are interested in participating in an interfaith group in northern Indiana. We are pursuing some new endeavors where community people can become involved with the group.