A taster of activities being held for Inter Faith Week 2020 8-15 November
The following are just a few examples of the activities planned to take place during Inter Faith Week 2020. They are being held by a wide variety of different types of body, including faith communities and inter faith organisations, schools, colleges, universities, hospitals, hospices, national and local government, housing associations, workplaces, the police and other emergency services, chaplaincies, museums, libraries and many others. Due to COVID-19 they are all online except in the few cases indicated as otherwise.
This accompanies the Press Release of 2 November.
You can find information about all activities taking place at www.interfaithweek.org/list This list is being updated daily with new events.
Week-long programmes will be taking place in some areas such as Birmingham, Kendal, Kirklees, Preston, Swindon, and York as well as in some universities and colleges.
Online Inter Faith Remembrance Day activities
- A ‘Faiths Together in Lambeth’ Remembrance video with speakers from different faiths sharing thoughts, readings and prayers
- A service of Remembrance led by the chaplaincy team at Solent NHS Trust
- A Remembrance event focusing on the sacrifice of BAME soldiers and civilians, led by South London Inter Faith Group
- ‘Thoughts for Peace, and Hope for the Future’, led by Medway Inter Faith Action
Online dialogues, discussions and panels such as:
- A ‘mosque-church’ conversations pilot, inviting conversations between local mosques and churches, arranged by Baptists Together, the Methodist Church, Muslim Council of Britain, the Salvation Army and the United Reformed Church, with support from the Christian Muslim Forum.
- ‘Unity in Diversity’, a meeting to share readings from different faiths and beliefs, followed by discussion, led by Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, and Fermanagh and Omagh Interfaith group
- People of different faiths sharing their perspectives on pilgrimage, held by County Durham Faiths Network
- Jewish and Quaker communities in Birmingham discussing their social action and welfare work
Activities focused on COVID-19, faith community responses and the lockdown experience, including:
- ‘Faith in Lockdown’, a discussion for faith leaders, led by NHS Digital in Leeds
- High profile celebrations of local faith community responses, involving Near Neighbours and organisations such as Wellsprings Together in London (with the Mayor’s office), West Yorkshire and a number of other areas
- A youth debate on ‘keeping the faith in a pandemic’ led by Islington Forum of Faiths
- An inter faith ‘lockdown quilt’ created by the York Interfaith Group during the pandemic with quilt panels contributed by the different faith communities
- Religions During COVID-19: Spiritual and Practical - sharing how people of faith have gained strength from their faiths in challenging times, led by Elmbridge Multi Faith Forum with speakers from the Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, and Muslim faiths
- A ‘Faith and Religious Small Charities Meet-up’, organised by the Small Charities Coalition looking at questions such as: "Has COVID increased the connection between faith organisations?”
- ‘Coronavirus and Congregational Cohesion’, a panel discussion on how COVID-19 has impacted faith communities, led by Bournemouth Reform Synagogue, Bournemouth Islamic Centre and Mosque, and St Peter's Parish Church Bournemouth with input from the Mayor
- A Leicester Council of Faiths meeting of members of various faiths to talk about how their faith and their scripture has helped them cope with the pandemic.
Explorations of social issues, including:
- Training on Dementia awareness for local faith leaders by Colchester Borough Council and Essex Alzheimers Society
- A Sikh-Christian Forum online conversation about ‘servant leadership’ and leading in the workplace.
- Launch of a new safeguarding forum in Luton by Faiths Against Child Sexual Exploitation (FACES)
- Climate change and sustainability events such as an event focusing on food and waste issues, held by Birmingham Footsteps for a Low Carbon Future
- A Guildford and Godalming Interfaith Forum service and discussion on ‘mental health in challenging times’
- Navigating Faith, Race and Identity in 2020 – a Board of Deputies of British Jews event
- A CST Safe series of webinars on security of places of worship
Celebrations and festivals, including:
- An inter faith celebration of Diwali and Christmas, led by the Jain Network
- A celebration of Inter Faith Week with music, artistic performances, short talks and prayers from different faiths, led by the All Faiths Network
- An LGBT+ celebration of Inter Faith Week arranged by the Faith and Belief Forum
Services such as:
- Acts of worship linked to a particular faith, but open to all to observe and with time for questions in many different areas, including Kendal, Medway, and Swindon.
- ‘Universal peace prayers’, led by Devon Faith and Belief Forum
- A ‘shared worship experience’ series led by Bromley Three Faiths Forum, in which local Jewish, Muslim and Christian communities will welcome each other to observe their usual worship services
School activities, including:
- A programme arranged by Kirklees Cohesion for primary school pupils (Years 2, 3 and 4) to learn about the faiths in their local community and also hold an act of Remembrance
- ‘Our handkerchiefs of hope’, where pupils will make an Inter Faith Week banner for the entrance of St Andrew's CE Aided Primary School in Bebington, Wirral
- Classroom learning about different faiths and diversity and Collective Worship at a number of schools such as Adderley CE Primary and Nursery Schools, Market Drayton
Events in Universities and colleges, such as:
- Virtual tours of local places of worship led by Bath Spa Students’ Union as part of a week-long programme of events
- An online lecture on Jewish-Christian Dialogue in Marc Chagall's Paintings at the University of Southampton
- An LGBT+ faith gathering at Swansea University
- A panel discussion on ‘Spirituality and Generation Y/Z activism’ led by Devon Faith and Belief Forum, and University of Exeter Multifaith Chaplaincy
- An inter faith discussion on violence against women and girls, at Oxford Brookes University
Cultural and arts events and quizzes, including:
- An inter faith knowledge quiz organised by Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust (TRFT) and the TRFT Chaplaincy
- Poetry, through events such as those being held by the Batley Poets and the Department for Education’s staff interfaith network and through online collections such as those arranged by the Greater Yarmouth Inter Faith and Belief Forum
There are also many other types of event such as a Big Ideas ‘foundations stones’ project linked to the UK Holocaust Memorial Foundation and the ‘Inter Faith Week challenge’ of the Inter-faith Council for Wales/ Cyngor Rhyng-ffydd Cymru which invites people to mark the Week with a different act that they can do individually each day from helping the homeless to posting an inspiring message on social media.