Interfaith

Interfaith Breakfast Encourages Cooperation in Social Activism

February 20, 2001

Source: The Record

On February 20, 2001, The Record, of Bergen County, New Jersey, reported on the Interfaith Brotherhood-Sisterhood Breakfast in Teaneck, New Jersey. 500 people attended the Presidents Day breakfast, which was "part of an effort to improve religious and racial harmony in North Jersey." In an address to the audience, Rabbi Daniel Polish of Manhattan urged his listeners to work together with others from different faiths to improve the lives of the underprivileged around the world.

Neighbors Hesitant to Endorse Construction of Mosque in Bellevue

February 20, 2001

Source: KOMO 4 News

On February 20, 2001, KOMO 4 News reported on the debate between residents of Bellevue, Washington, over the proposed construction of a 30,000 square foot mosque. "Neighbors are worried about property values, traffic, and the uncertainty of what happens in a mosque." One local Muslim says he "believes there's an underlying racism in opposition to the mosque."

Faith-based Initiative Raises Questions About Who Will Receive Funding

February 20, 2001

Source: The New York Times

On February 20, 2001, The New York Times reported that in the coming days, President Bush's claim that his faith-based initiatives will not favor one religion above another will be tested. Religious groups including the Hare Krishnas, the Church of Scientology, and the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification, U.S.A., are some groups who anticipate applying for funding from the program. The article notes that "Mr. Bush's effort could provoke new questions about what constitutes a legitimate religion."

Project Examines Interaction Between Religion and Politics for American Latinos

February 20, 2001

Source: Religious Studies AAR News

On February 20, 2001, Religious Studies AAR News reported that "the Hispanic Churches in American Public Life (HCAPL) research project is a three-year study funded by a $1.3 million grant from The Pew Charitable Trusts. The project seeks to examine the impact of religion on political and civic engagement in the Latino community." The co-directors are Jesse Miranda of Alianza de Ministerios Evangelicos Nacionales (AMEN) and Virgilio Elizondo of the Mexican American Cultural Center (MACC). The study plans to conduct...

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Pagans Respond to Faith-Based Initiatives and Discrimination in Letter to Bush

February 19, 2001

Source: www.aren.org

An press release about the open letter outlined instances of discrimination against Pagans on the part of government officials and the media. For example, on "Mc Laughlin's One on One," Stephen Goldsmith, the Domestic Policy Advisor to the President, said that he did not "think that Wiccans would meet the standard of being humane providers of domestic violence shelters." Indiana Representative Souder stated on the House floor in April that "it is unlikely under President Bush that the witches would get funding."

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Small Iowa Town Makes Steps Toward Acceptance of Jewish Residents

February 19, 2001

Source: Star Tribune

On February 19, 2001, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported that the 150 to 200 Hasidic Jews who live in Postville, Iowa, "may finally be on the verge of gaining acceptance in this predominantly Christian community of 1,600 residents." The first Jews arrived from New York in 1987. "Last month, in one of the most significant developments yet, the town council appointed its first Jew." Several residents then signed a petition objecting to the appointment. The petition has "forced everybody off the fence" about their position toward Jewish...

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Op-Ed Articles Respond to Bush's Faith-Based Initiative

February 19, 2001

Source: National Review

On February 19, 2001, the National Review published a criticism by Kate O'Beirne of Bush's new faith-based initiative. One concern she brings up is that the government will "throttle the faith-based programs with regulations," or try to "to distort the mission of faith-based groups receiving public money." Another is that most religious-sounding social-welfare programs are actually not "devoted to spiritual renewal and character transformation," which many of the initiative's supporters see as the unique strength of religious groups...

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Pagans Respond to Faith-Based Initiatives and Discrimination in Letter to Bush

February 19, 2001

Source: No source given.

On February 19, 2001, a group of Pagans wrote an open statement to President Bush and other government officials in which they expressed concerns about Bush's new faith-based initiatives and about discriminatory comments made by individuals in government and from the media. Pagans are concerned they will be discriminated against in the awarding of government funds to faith-based initiatives. This letter is collecting signatures on the AREN website at http://www.aren.org.

Pre-School Provides Example on How Groups with Many Faiths Should Interact

February 18, 2001

Source: New York Daily News

http://www.nydailynews.com/2001-02-18/News_and_Views/City_Beat/a-100266.asp

On February 18, 2001, the New York Daily News reported on the the Treasure Island Pre-School in Brooklyn, New York, where love is "expressed daily among children whose families are Jewish, Muslim and Christian." In a community "where tensions have run high because of strains in the Middle East, an emphasis is being placed on unity among people...

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Mixed Reactions to Funding of Faith-Based Organizations

February 18, 2001

Source: Los Angeles Times

On February 18, 2001, the Los Angeles Times published an article about the Jewish response to Bush's new faith-based initiative. Many Jewish leaders "remain guarded with Bush, who has...made his Christian faith a prominent part of his political platform. Both the American Jewish Committee and the American Jewish Congress oppose the president's plan... Yet, there is a growing minority of American Jews who... are 'pleased that President Bush is committed to increasing the partnership between government and faith and community-based...

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Religious Devotees Express Faith through Vanity Plates

February 18, 2001

Source: The Associated Press

On February 18, 2001, The Associated Press reported that "scores of Massachusetts drivers are adorning their cars with...faith-based vanity plates." Pat Wormsted, manager of special plates at the Registry of Motor Vehicles "said she would not approve any plates that express a religious belief...because some people might be offended," but some religious terms that she is unfamiliar with slip by her. "Placing religious slogans on license plates reflects the traditional desire of believers, especially Christians, to publicly...

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Op-Ed Articles Respond to Bush's Faith-Based Initiative

February 18, 2001

Source: The Washington Post

On February 18, 2001, The Washington Post published an opinion piece by Mark Silk on Bush's new faith-based initiative. Silk points out that although many faith-based service-providing nonprofits already receive government funds, Bush's plan is more complex because it calls for the mobilization of religious congregations, and because it calls for funding groups that believe clients can only be helped by faith. He warns that "enabling religious congregations to create new social services with government funds without increasing...

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Bush's Faith-Based Initiatives Have Precedents in Ohio

February 16, 2001

Source: The Columbus Dispatch

On February 16, 2001, The Columbus Dispatch reported that in Ohio religious organizations are already receiving federal money to implement social programs. "The seeds of President Bush's faith-based initiative were sown in the 1996 welfare-reform law, with a provision known as 'charitable choice.'...For years, organizations such as Catholic Charities USA have taken federal money for their services but have kept their religious components separate from their services and abided by anti-discrimination laws." Joel Potts, assistant...

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Minister Claims Orthodox Christians and Jews Reject Inclusive Approach

February 16, 2001

Source: Capital Times

On February 16, 2001, the Madison Capital Times published an article by Rev. Michael A.Schuler of the First Unitarian Society, in which he warns that, under the Bush administration, "conservative Christians [will] try to halt the current drift toward pluralism...Orthodox Christians and Jews reject a more inclusive and open-minded approach to religion because, for them, to be religious means to be sectarian as well." Schuler says that, globally, they have begun to "redouble their efforts to defend the old order," in response to...

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Ohio Interfaith Association Works for Peace and Human Rights

February 16, 2001

Source: The Columbus Dispatch

On February 16, 2001, The Columbus Dispatch reported on the Interfaith Association of Central Ohio, which has 350 members from Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism, Baha'ism, Islam and Judaism. All are volunteers. "The missions of the association...are to educate its members and the public about customs of different faiths and to provide interfaith public worship and ceremonies related to local and global concerns." The association's projects, which range from peace-training programs in public schools to the creation of...

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