On August 15, 2014, the Archdiocese of Washington (ADW) with the help of the Inter-Faith Conference of Metropolitan Washington (IFC) held an Interfaith Prayer Service for Peace at the St. John Paul II National Shrine in Washington D.C. The IFC worked closely with the ADW’s Office of Ecumenism and Interfaith Affairs to bring together eleven faith leaders from the local community to pray for peace at a time when the whole world is witnessing with incredulity a heightened state of conflict and inter-religious intolerance. Cardinal Donald Wuerl, (Roman Catholic) Archbishop of Washington, and the faith leaders (several of whom serve on the IFC Board of Directors or on the IFC Faith Leaders Group) read or chanted from each one’s own sacred scriptures. The excerpts from the holy texts highlighted the love of neighbor and peaceful coexistence that is at the heart of each religious tradition. The event included some exceptional music from the St. Camillus Multicultural Choir.
The faith representatives present included: Michael Turner (Baha’i); Rev. Maynard Moore (Methodist Christian); Rabbi Charles Feinberg (Jewish); Richard Cizik (Evangelical Christian); Rizwan Jaka (Muslim); Dr. Siva Subramanian (Hindu/Jain); Dr. Kari O’Grady (Mormon); Most Venerable Uparatana Mahathera (Sri Lankan Buddhism); Most Venerable Taweepong Mahathera (Thai Buddhism); Dr. B.N. Hebbar (Buddhism), Very Reverend Fr. Issac Crow (Orthodox Christian).