London’s faith communities are open and welcoming!
In step with the Mayor’s #LondonIsOpen message, a short film has been shot on location across the capital and includes Sikh, Quaker, Jewish, Islamic, Hindu, Christian, Buddhist & Baha’i places opening their doors.
Against a backdrop of international tensions and increased hate crime, London’s faith groups, from humble to grand, are not closed and fearful – we remain open and welcoming!
Inter Faith Week events across London are screening the new film as part of their activities – you are welcome to do the same by using this link. Can you identify the different places?
Thanks to everyone who responded to our email during the summer and welcomed in the cameras – we were overwhelmed with offers. A big thank you to Rosalind Parker and Jack Jeffreys for the filming. For any who would like to get involved in the next stage, our #LondonIsOpen initiative continues – join us at 3pm on Tuesday 6 December at Collaboration House, 77 Charlotte Street, W1T 4PW, to plan for 2017. Let us know if you’d like to join us.
The Near Neighbours programme has expanded into more boroughs. It offers small grants (£250 – £5,000) to bring together neighbours and develop relationships across different religious traditions & ethnicities in order to improve our communities.
Launch events for the new boroughs are planned and we hope Becky & Tim will join us at LBFN before long to tell us more.
Stephen Greenhalgh, Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, is revisiting every London borough with senior Metropolitan Police officers. Sixteen boroughs were visited early in 2014.
They will be talking about local policing, telling us how they’ve been putting the Police and Crime Plan into practice and answering our questions.
Following our recent meeting at New Scotland Yard with Commander Mak Chishty, the roadshow may provide another opportunity to contact our Borough Commanders to talk about their engagement plans with local faith forums.
The next 16 events are scheduled from September to December. Attendance is on a first come, first serve basis. They are asking people to register now and to let them know of any access needs.
- Kingston upon Thames Monday, 8 September 2014 – 6:00pm
- Wandsworth Wednesday, 10 September 2014 – 6:00pm
- Newham Tuesday, 16 September 2014 – 6:00pm
- Richmond upon Thames Thursday, 25 September 2014 – 6:00pm
- Ealing Thursday, 9 October 2014 – 6:00pm
- Brent Tuesday, 14 October 2014 – 6:00pm
- Greenwich Tuesday, 21 October 2014 – 6:00pm
- Croydon Tuesday, 4 November 2014 – 6:00pm
- Barking & Dagenham Monday, 10 November 2014 – 6:00pm
- Hounslow Thursday, 13 November 2014 – 6:00pm
- Waltham Forest Tuesday, 18 November 2014 – 6:00pm
- Redbridge Tuesday, 25 November 2014 – 6:00pm
- Enfield Monday, 1 December 2014 – 6:00pm
- Harrow Wednesday, 3 December 2014 – 6:00pm
- Bromley Thursday, 11 December 2014 – 6:00pm
- Lewisham Tuesday, 16 December 2014 – 6:00pm
A quick round-up of activities in London over the next couple of months, for activists and thinkers alike. Plenty to get our teeth into – enjoy!
Thursday 24 April 12.30-2pm South London Inter Faith Group informal lunch meeting at Streatham Friends Meeting House, Redlands Way, SW2 3LU.
Tuesday 29 April, 6pm – 8pm Multifaith Hustings for the European Elections at the Karibu Education Centre, 7 Gresham Road, Brixton, SW9 7PH, organised by Faiths Together in Lambeth. Further details here.
Tuesday 29 April 6.30pm at the Boothroyd Room, Portcullis House, Westminster, SW1A 2LQ. Building Communities In An Age Of Change, with GlobalNet21 & Community Development Network London. Speakers include Andy Sawford MP & Steve Wyler of Locality. Details here.
Wednesday 30 April 7.15 to 9pm Women’s Discussion Group (discussion, support and friendship) Hounslow Friends of Faith, Hounslow Community Centre, Montague Road, Hounslow TW3 1JY. Details here.
Wednesday 7 May 6.30pm at St Paul’s Cathedral, EC4M 8AD. Climate Change: Building the Will for Action with Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. Download the flyer here & book a place here.
Saturday 10 May 7.00-8.15pm Conversations for the Soul (one to one interfaith conversations about beliefs and practice) at the South London Islamic Centre, 8 Mitcham Lane, SW16 6NN. Details from John Woodhouse on 020 8677 0588 or 0790 8888 586 or email email@example.com.
Sunday 11 May 2.30pm Lambeth Multi-faith Action Group. Faith in Education at Corpus Christi Church Hall, Brixton Hill, SW2 5BJ. Speakers include Sayed Ali Abbas Razawi, Sarah Thorley and Fr Joseph Briffa SJ.
Monday 12 May 6 for 6.30pm at 77 Great Peter Street, London, SW1P 2EZ Atheists: the Origin of the Species with Nick Spencer of Theos (book launch and discussion).
Tuesday 13 May 9.45-11.45am London Peace Network planning group meets in central London, probably in the Euston Road area. The Peace Network was brought together by LBFN to promote the Olympic Truce and to support local peace-building. Visit the website to see what is planned and let LBFN know if you’d like to join us for the planning meeting – you would be most welcome. Check LPN on Facebook.
Tuesday 13 May12.00 to 13.30 Lunchtime Dialogue in Whitechapel with the Christian Muslim Forum. A regular session based on Conversations for the Soul (tandem dialogue between people of different faiths) on the second Tuesday of each month. More details from CMF here.
Wednesday 14 May 5.30pm to 7.00pm. RUSI, 61 Whitehall, London, SW1A 2ET. How has religion become an agent in peace-building in conflict areas of the world? Westminster Faith Debates.
Wednesday 14 May 18.30 Narrative Practitioners Forum – for those who use personal narrative and story in their work to share best practice and learn from each other. At the London Inter Faith Centre, 125 Salusbury Road, NW6 6RG. With St Ethelburga’s Centre for Reconciliation & Peace, the Forgiveness Project, International School of Storytelling and Guerrard Hermes Foundation for Peace. £10. Book here.
Friday 16 May Deadline for call for abstracts (invited from scholars and relevant practitioners) for an academic workshop Sense of Belonging in a Diverse Britain. Wide range of papers welcomed. Workshop organised by the Dialogue Society and Coventry University on 20-21 November in Coventry.
Thursday 29 May 10.30-15.00 Religion and Belief in Higher Education conference at SRHE, 73 Collier Street, London, N1 9BE. Papers include one on the social and academic experiences of Christian, Sikh, Muslim and Jewish students. £60. Details here.
Tuesday 10th June to Thursday 12th June: Understanding Islam, a three day course with Dr Chris Hewer and the Faithful Friends group in Ham, Richmond. More details from Diana Mills at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday 14th June 9.45am-6pm Westminster Interfaith’s 29th Annual Multi-Faith Pilgrimage for Peace – this year in Haringey. This is always a popular event – booking form & contacts here and more details in the latest newsletter here.
Monday 16 June Reflections of Jesus and Muhammad, or Distortions? Day conference with the Christian Muslim Forum and several leading speakers at Abrar House, Crawford Place, nr Edgware Road W1H 4LP. Details & registration here.
Tuesday 17 June – Wednesday 18 June European Network on Religion & Belief AGM in Brussels, Belgium. Grassroots practitioners from across Europe gathering together, with Matthew Goodwin (Nottingham University) speaking on the far right in Europe and the impact of the recent elections. This is a free event (reasonably priced accommodation available), with a visit to the European Parliament and Commission included. Further information & registration here. LBFN has been part of ENORB from its inception.
Thursday 26 June 18.30 to 21.00 Multiculturalism – Problem or Solution? How do we all fit together, what kind of society do we live in, is it working? Speakers include Dan Nilsson DeHanas, Akeela Ahmed, Ajmal Masroor, Revd Alan Green (Tower Hamlets Inter Faith Forum). £5. Details from the Christian Muslim Forum.
At LBFN’s last meeting at DCLG we agreed to form several ‘social labs‘. Our regular meetings are very successful at bringing a wide range of practitioners together from across the capital, but there are too many of us now to discuss our concerns in depth each time. Have a look at the Social Labs page and let the convener know which one(s) you’d like to be involved with – there are six to choose from.
A few borough networks are refreshing their ideas, getting involved in new activities and attracting new members. Contact LBFN if you’d like to meet up with similar faith forums/multifaith networks to share experiences. Our Waterloo office is a perfect meeting space, with its informal cafe and plenty of space.
Please pass news on to your communities and networks and let LBFN know if you have any events, publications, job opportunities or news you would like to share.
Keep in touch via email. And if you are on Facebook, please ‘like’ LBFN’s page https://www.facebook.com/LondonBoroughsFaithsNetwork and use it to link to your own activities. LBFN’s convener tweets @multifaith and is always happy to find LBFN friends on Twitter.
20 January 9.30am – 4.10pm A Conversation about Conflict exploring the faith influences that can be used to tackle difficult issues in a community setting. St Ethelburga’s and Christian Muslim Forum are co-facilitating the workshop at 305 Cambridge Heath Road, E2 9LH. Details here.
- Could your faith community improve the way it responds to conflict?
- Are you interested in bringing the principles and practices of your faith into your responses to conflict?
- Are you interested in sharing your faith practices across faiths and learning from each other?
22 January 10am-12pm Together in Service funding briefing at Bethnal Green Mission Church, 305 Cambridge Heath Road, E2 9LH. There’s also a chance to talk to the TiS team individually about potential projects. Details here.
27 January Holocaust Memorial Day events have been been organised by many London boroughs in cooperation with local religious communities, including Barnet, Lewisham, Haringey, Southwark, Greenwich, Croydon, Brent, Lambeth, Hounslow and Havering. Details of all London events here.
27 January 5.30pm European Parliament training event with Faiths Forum for London at Europe House, Smith Square, W1. The aim is to engage with citizens and faith groups to raise awareness of the issues and debates taking place in European Parliament and how citizens can get involved the decision making. Details here.
South London Inter Faith Group meets on the last Thursday of the month at 12.30-2pm at Streatham Friends Meeting House, Roupell Park Estate, Redland Way, SW2 3LU. Next meeting 30 January. Details here.
4 February 6pm The Dialogue Society Book Group Meeting 5: A Distant Shore, by Caryl Phillips The Dialogue Society, 402 Holloway Road, N7 6PZ. Details here.
Westminster Faith Debates are back with a new series, on global religious trends, at RUSI, 61 Whitehall, SW1A 2ET at 5.30pm, including on 12 February What is driving sectarian violence in the wake of the Arab spring? and on 12 March Are attempts to promote worldwide religious freedom naive or necessary? Details here.
18 February Women in the 21st Century conference at Queen Mary University, London E1 4NS with a wide range of speakers and workshops (£40). Details here.
Westminster Cathedral Interfaith Group meets next to the Cathedral in Victoria on the third Wednesday of the month at 4pm. Upcoming speakers include Hugo Clarke (Curzon Institute) on World War 1 (19 February), Raheed Salam, faith and interfaith consultant for NCVYS (19 March). Details here.
11 March 3-5pm London Boroughs Faiths Network meeting at the Department for Communities and Local Government, Eland House, Bressenden Place, SW1E 5DU. We are also planning two focused meetings on health and on young Londoners.
Goldsmiths’ Faiths and Civil Society Unit has a series on Faith in the Public Realm, including How do governments do God? Warwick Hawkins MBE, Head of Faith Communities Engagement, Department for Communities and Local Government
12 March at 5pm. Near Neighbours – can Christians do public faith for everyone? Dilwar Hussain, New Horizons in British Islam, 14 May at 5pm. Details here.
15 March God and Government Conference with Theos, covering welfare, religious freedom, multiculturalism, and education among others. Details here.
Research Project on Attitudes to Self-Sacrificial Death for National and/or Religious Motives. Prof John Wolffe (Professor of Religious History, The Open University) is interested to hear from anyone from a Catholic, Protestant or Muslim background who would like to take part in this study by being interviewed. “In the run-up to the centenaries of the outbreak of the First World War (August 1914), of the Easter Rising in Dublin (April 1916) and of the Battle of the Somme (July 1916), we are developing a historical and contemporary study of British and Irish views on martyrdom and sacrificial death. We are interested not only in perceptions of events a century ago, but also in the way casualties have been regarded in events within living memory such as the Falklands War of 1982, the ‘Troubles’ in Northern Ireland and IRA attacks in the mainland UK in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s. We are also exploring more contemporary examples, notably reactions to the 9/11 and 7/7 bombings, to the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, and to the ‘Arab Spring’.” Details here.
The theme is Journeys. We’re encouraged to organise our own events or take part in other people’s activities. The HMD organiser packs are always excellent – order one here.
“For Holocaust Memorial Day 2014, we will learn of the multitude of Journeys that people were forced to undertake, in fear of what would be found at the end.
We will do so at events that bring us together with our neighbours, that strengthen bonds of respect, and that enable us to pledge to take a step towards creating a safer, better future.”
We can also get involved online, marking our support for a day which encourages us to remember the stories from the Holocaust and subsequent genocides, to be alert to racism, prejudice and discrimination and to “support the view that all citizens – without distinction – should participate freely and fully in the economic, social and public life of the nation.”
There are plenty of resources and ideas for different kinds of events and activities, including ideas and information especially for religious and multifaith groups. There are podcasts from Revd Toby Howarth (the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Inter Religious Affairs adviser), Hasan Hasanović (a Bosnian Muslim remembering Srebrenica) and on the role of Righteous Muslims during WWII.
Please add any plans you or your borough or faith forum have for Holocaust Memorial Day in a comment below so that the invitations can be shared widely.