In the first week of February, both the beginning of Black History Month and World Interfaith Harmony Week, Christians, Muslims, and interested neighbours from Edmonton and beyond will gather for an online workshop to build interfaith anti-racist solidarity.
This two-hour conversation will feature theological reflection from Muslim and Christian holy texts, storytelling from Black faith practitioners, and conversation to draw in allies for action to make faith spaces safe spaces for all worshippers.
Co-presented by the Anglican Diocese of Edmonton and The Green Room, the planning team hopes to reflect on the importance of safety and inclusion in our communities, and the reality that such inclusion has not always been the case.
“I am hopeful that open and honest dialogue, reflection, and a willingness to learn are some of the first steps in an ongoing process of change and healing,” says Timiro Mohamed, Youth Initiatives Manager for The Green Room. "Black community members deserve to experience safety and belonging in our places of worship; unfortunately, this is not always our reality.”
The Ven. Jordan Ware, Archdeacon for Social Justice and Community Connection for the Anglican Diocese of Edmonton, says Christians and Muslims hold the value of anti-racism in common. “Our respective Scriptures teach that God is anti-racist, that God created all human beings on the earth of every race and nation and loves us all. It only makes sense for us to work together to end the anti-Black racism we see in our community.”
The event was moved online due to concerns about the spread of the omicron variant and hospital capacity. Event organisers hope to follow with an in-person sequel later in the spring that will allow participants to eat together and share hospitality as they share their hopes for an Edmonton free of racism.
Registration remains open until Saturday morning. Register online at faith-spaces-safe-spaces.eventbrite.ca to join in the conversation from 10 am to12 pm on Saturday, February 5.