Religious Leaders See Challenges and Hope in the New Century

January 13, 2001

Source: The Kansas City Star

On January 13, 2001, The Kansas City Star reported on religious leaders' hopes and fears for the new century. One area of concern is the direction of the economy. With Bush's "proposal of tax cuts that will benefit the wealthy," said the Rev. Loy C. Drew of the First African Methodist Episcopal Church in Kansas City, the poor will be coming to faith-based organizations more often for help with food, shelter, and the payment of bills. Another area of concern are the problems in the Middle East. Ahmed El-Sherif, president of the Kansas City chapter of the American Muslim Council, "believes pain and suffering will bring the Palestinians and Israelis closer together to work harder to resolve their differences. Also, he sees the unrest bringing Muslims and Christians in Israel closer, 'because neither group wants Israeli occupation.' Locally, faith communities are finding ways to come together," but the Rev. Thomas Tank, vicar-general of the Archdiocese of Kansas City "wants to see renewed efforts for churches to work together...El-Sherif believes more focus should be placed on teaching youth to respect one another and on people of all faiths working together to help the less fortunate."