Around 25 people gathered at Dudley Council House this morning for an Inter Faith Week reception. The group included people from a number of different faith communities from across the Borough as well as the Mayor of Dudley, Andrea Goddard and representatives from the local Council, Police, schools and local charities.
This year’s theme for Inter Faith Week is ‘faith in society’ and the group explored what this meant for them. Topics discussed included reaching out to young people, what charities might need from faith communities and how we can have better conversations around difference and diversity as well as demystifying different religions. There was also a chance to share lunch and network together.
The Mayor thanked all those present for everything they do to make a difference in the local community and the group heard a keynote speech from Hakk Ozal from The Dialogue Society, which exists to connect communities and promote understanding between people with different beliefs. He said:
“Inter Faith Week is an important opportunity to promote dialogue and work towards our shared goals of tolerance and understanding between people of different faiths. We should be celebrating our diversity and shared values and hosting more educational workshops where people can learn about the cultures of their neighbours. Our faiths and backgrounds should not be barriers, but bridges to connect us. This will help us to build a stronger and more united Dudley.”
The reception was organised by Calum Burke, Curate at Top Church. At the end of the event, Rector of Dudley, James Treasure lit a candle and led a short time of silent reflection with a commitment to work together for peace.