Tampa Bay Celebrates Non-Violence and Religious Literacy During Fourth Annual "Interfaith Week"

For the fourth year in a row, Interfaith Tampa Bay and Integral Church will host Tampa Bay Interfaith Week — an opportunity to see how the rest of your community celebrates the sacred in a casual, open, educational setting.

This year's theme is "I Am Your Neighbor."

During Interfaith Week, individuals and families are encouraged to visit the many churches, temples, mosques, meditation centers and spiritual communities across Tampa Bay to gain a better understanding of the people, values, beliefs, practices and cultures that make up our dynamic and vibrant region.

This year, the event will run from Sunday, October 1 to Sunday, October 8, and include free panel and roundtable discussions at various campuses and venues on such topics as: non-violent communication, religious innovation, spiritual community, eastern and western philosophy, universal values, creating accommodating and welcoming spaces, musical performances and more.

This year’s Tampa Bay Interfaith Week will include:

  • An official Interfaith Week proclamation by St. Pete Mayor Rick Kriseman
  • An Opening Ceremony at St. Peter’s Cathedral featuring music, interfaith prayers and opening remarks by the mayor
  • A Closing Ceremony at Temple Beth-El
  • Panel discussions, interactive workshops, film screenings, dance, music and food
  • Open houses and involvement from various faith communities including those of the Baha’i, Buddhist, Catholic, Christian, Christian Science, Episcopal, Interspiritual, Jewish, Muslim, Quaker, Taoist, Unitarian Universalist, Unity and more.

Tampa Bay Interfaith Week continues to promote a message of conversation, compassion, peace and pluralism — and holds our region up as an example of a community based on mutual respect, cooperation and collaboration.

If you are a Tampa Bay-based church, temple, ashram, mosque, meditation center or spiritual community, there are a few different ways to be involved.

  1. List YOUR events on the calendar

We can list on the calendar any events you may have happening that week — from your normal worship, prayer or meditation services to evening classes, open houses, performances or talks.

  1. JOIN a panel discussion

If you (or a representative of your organization) would like to participate in a public conversation about interfaith relations (community, family, workplace, etc.) or the topics listed above, just let us know and we can place you on a panel that is most appropriate.

  1. HOST an event

If your community would like to host a panel discussion, workshop or special performance (produced by your staff), we would feature this event on the calendar and website as a “Featured Event” and help you promote it.

This year’s sponsors include St. Mary Our Lady of Grace, St. Petersburg Baha’i Center and more.

For more information on Tampa Bay Interfaith Week, please click here or contact the 2017 event committee chair, Victor Ray, at victorray49@gmail.com. If you're interested in supporting or becoming a sponsor of Tampa Bay Interfaith Week, please contact Claudia McIvor at claudiamcivor@gmail.com.

Watch the highlight video from last year’s event by clicking here.

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This article appears in: 2017 Catalyst, Issue 19: The International Day of Peace