Blog from Malcolm Deboo, one of IFN’s Trustees and FCF Moderators

Malcolm Deboo is Trustee of the Inter Faith Network, and a Moderator of its Faith Communities Forum representing Zoroastrian Trust Funds of Europe. During Inter Faith Week he visited an evening of cultural performances organised by the All Faiths Network.

Inter Faith Week is a programme of the Inter Faith Network for the UK (IFN). During Inter Faith Week 2019, members of the IFN's staff team, Trustee Board and Moderators of its Faith Communities Forum visited a range of activities across the country, and we will be posting blogs and reflections from some of them. 

Malcolm Deboo is a Trustee of IFN, and a Moderator of IFN's Faith Communities Forum, where he represents Zoroastrian Trust Funds of Europe. He visited an evening of inter faith cultural performances held by the All Faiths Network. He says: 

“There were addresses of welcome given by Martin Weightman, Director of All Faiths Network and Esther Laveau, Director of Fitzroy House, where the event took place.       

I spoke about the vision and mission of IFN and its key role leading on Inter Faith Week over the last decade. In some personal reflections, I underlined the importance for all of us in our multi faith, multi cultural society of becoming more aware about our neighbours and work colleagues’ beliefs so that we can appreciate diversity and continue to strive to live in harmony with people of all faiths and none.

The programme celebrated the richness and variety of different religions, highlighting shared values such as respect and tolerance and such themes as the importance of greater understanding of life and creation. 

The participants included:

  • Hindu children performing an Indian classical dance to Goddess Durga;
  • Sikh children singing devotional songs;
  • a Michel Jackson tribute artist singing 'Heal the World';
  • a singer from the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints;
  • a Christian minister singing 'Amazing Grace';
  • a reciter of Sufi poetry in Urdu;
  • a member of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community;
  • a Muslim Imam speaking about peace in Islam;
  • the Chairman of Aido speaking on dialogue in East Africa;
  • the Mayor of Croydon's appointed 'International Ambassador of Croydon;
  • a Church of Scientology representative reflecting on improving inter faith and community relations in London;
  • a Jewish fashion designer saying the traditional Shabbat Prayer.

It was a cold and rainy outside that day, but the event organisers were very hospitable, providing food at the beginning of the evening, which generated a warm atmosphere. Tea and a spread of cakes was laid out after the event, allowing participants to greet and network.

The event was hosted by the Church of Scientology at Fitzroy House, a Georgian building, in central London which is the Church of Scientology’s London base and a museum to its founder and past occupant L Ron Hubbard."