Westminster Bridge | Wednesday 29 March | 2.15pm

Message from Commander Chishty, Metropolitan Police

Dear Friends,

7th Day Anniversary of Westminster Bridge Attack ‘A Bridge for all Communities’

There has been an overwhelming desire by people from all different faiths and backgrounds wanting to pay their respect to those who lost their lives, suffered injury and to show that #WeStandTogether against all forms of extremism and hate.

The attack took place on one of our most well-known bridges, Westminster Bridge and many people feel it is fitting to come together on a ‘bridge’ across our cities and towns symbolising that we have a ‘Bridge for all Communities’.

The proposal is simply for an assembly of people who want to come together at the same time that the attack took place last week and be able to

  • observe one minute silence
  • have the opportunity for private reflection
  • offer prayers and good wishes
  • show that #WeStandTogether

As a show of unity we felt it would be lovely if people were able to carry a single flower during the event which can be laid down as a sign that we will never forget those who lost their lives.

These 7 day anniversary events will be taking place across the country, including London, Birmingham, Bradford, Manchester, Leicester, Leeds and Sheffield.

The event in London will take place on Westminster Bridge and people will be asked to meet outside the Park Plaza Hotel on the South Side of Westminster Bridge at 1415hrs on Wednesday 29 March 2017.

With my best wishes

Mak Chishty
Commander Engagement

Training on safety and security

new-scotland-yardSafety and Security for Places of Worship in London: supporting each other across religious traditions.

Pilot course starting this year: one evening per week over 6 weeks at New Scotland Yard.

The training is for small to medium sized places of worship, with an encouraging message to build confidence and to kick-start some action.

We will learn across faith boundaries, developing diverse networks of support. Our emphasis is on bottom-up ways of working, building on the good work already taking place.

Connecting with our public agency colleagues, we will link churches with temples, synagogues with gurdwaras and Islamic centres: we will not only upskill ourselves, but will understand each other’s different safety concerns and become better able to support each other.

DRAFT PROGRAMME

  1. People in places of worship – safeguarding, lone workers, secure spaces, staff, volunteers (with Metropolitan Police)
  2. Emergencies – terror attack, flood, pandemic & recovery plans (with Ecclesiastical Insurance, Metropolitan Police & London Resilience)
  3. Hate Crime – on the street, on public transport, online abuse (with British Transport Police, Tell Mama & Community Security Trust)
  4. Safety in buildings – worship/teaching, events & visitors, statutory requirements, checks, fire prevention, exits, drilling procedures (with Ecclesiastical Insurance, Community Security Trust & Metropolitan Police)
  5. Supportive links – Borough Councils, Metropolitan Police, City Hall, London Transport Police, London Fire Brigade, Ecclesiastical Insurance, Tell Mama, Community Security Trust, London Resilience, NHS, Public Health
  6. Checklists – who does what, legal obligations, communications, governance and media matters

The pilot course will be open to suggestions and changes along the way and the learning will be captured.  We hope the course will be both robust and popular, and rolled out to other areas of the country.

To register your place of worship on the waiting list for training, or if your organisation is interested in contributing to this initiative, please get in touch.

We are grateful to Ecclesiastical Insurance for their continuing support.

#LondonIsOpen film for Inter Faith Week

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?

london-is-open-logo

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.

Film premiere | #LondonIsOpen Places of Worship | 21 September

londonisopen-21-septLBFN’s peace & reconciliation strand includes convening the London Peace Network, which marks the UN International Day of Peace each year.

Join film-makers, artists, religious leaders and LBFN friends from across the capital on Wednesday 21 September at 8am-9am at St Martin-in-the-Fields Church, Trafalgar Square for the premiere of a short film celebrating London’s places of worship – we are open and welcoming, not closed and fearful. Download the flyer.

The film is inspired by the Mayor of London’s #LondonIsOpen series and will be shown at Southwark Cathedral later in the year in the presence of the Mayor.  Churches, Islamic centres, temples, synagogues, meeting houses and gurdwaras will be open to guests during their times of worship or meeting on 23, 24 and 25 September – contact LBFN for details.

To secure your place, please register on the Eventbrite page.

Safe and secure – together

New Scotland Yard did us proud yesterday - thank you Commander Chishty, C Supt Dave Stringer & Insp Andy Burton

New Scotland Yard did us proud yesterday – thank you Commander Chishty, C Supt Dave Stringer & Insp Andy Burton

With officers from NYPD joining us (true!), and people from over 70 temples, Islamic centres, gurdwaras, churches and synagogues across London, we had a great time yesterday at New Scotland Yard.

We learned a lot – from each other, from our guest speakers Tell Mama, Community Security Trust and Ecclesiastical Insurance and from the Met themselves.

How do we, practically, keep our buildings and people safe and secure?  How do we mind each other’s backs – co-ordinating support across the places of worship in our neighbourhood?  What about social media?  Lone workers?  Or if disaster hits London – disease, flood, attack?

Bespoke, tailored training is on its way, courtesy of LBFN’s Safety & Security Social Lab, working with the Metropolitan Police and partners.  Let us know if you’re interested.  We’ll upload the checklists and presentations soon.

Thank you Bharti Taylor, Steve Miller, RashidAli Laher, Surinder Singh Jandu & Archdeacon Paul Wright for setting the scene and to everyone for searching questions and positive ideas for the next steps.

It wasn’t all doom & gloom or death by PowerPoint – LBFN meetings are nothing if not very social, and the cream cakes all disappeared.

Places of Worship: New Scotland Yard 8 October 1-5pm

Screenshot (8)Local temples, churches, Islamic centres, gurdwaras, synagogues!  Brush up on safety & security for your buildings and for your communities with the latest information from experts in the field.

LBFN & the Metropolitan Police have teamed up with Ecclesiastical Insurance, Community Security Trust, Tell Mama & London Resilience for a packed afternoon of security briefing, safety training, tips, checklists and a chance to question the experts.  Special attention will be given to the needs of small and medium sized communities.

Commander Mak Chishty and Ch Supt Dave Stringer will welcome us to New Scotland Yard on Thursday 8 October at 12.45pm for 1pm – 5pm.

Booking is essential in order to clear security and receive a Visitor Pass.  We have plenty of room, so two or three people will be able to attend from one place of worship, which will help us put the knowledge into practice.  Refreshments will be provided.

Register online now: https://safetybriefing.eventbrite.co.uk

Borough Faith Forums – please circulate this invitation to those who may be interested.

Download the outline programme here.

If you have any questions, please contact LBFN’s convener.

Participants from several religious traditions have already registered.  We look forward to seeing you on Thursday 8 October!

Upcoming in London

Check out our new What’s On page for a full listing of London events for LBFN members & friends – email us with your news or add items to our Facebook page.

bed flyerThursday 21 May 3.30pm – 9pm Bridging Extreme Differences: Building Dialogue with Extremists at the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, WC1A 2LP hosted by BIMA – Belief in Mediation and Arbitration. Download flyer.

Thursday 21 May 6:30pm – 8:30pm Death, Dying and Religion – Spirituality at the End of Life at Trinity Hospice, 30 Clapham Common North Side, SW4 0RN, on the role of spiritual care at the end of life, followed by Q&A. Rafi Fuchs, Spiritual Co-ordinator at Jewish care home Nightingale House, Eva Bellim, Trinity Hospice, Imam Suliman Gani, Tooting Mosque and Dennis Pearce, Bermondsey Buddhist Centre on their perspectives of death and dying, followed by a discussion on how we can work together to improve the relationship between religious communities and hospices.  For healthcare professionals, community leaders and members of the public.

bacTuesday 26 May – Saturday 6 June 7pm Like Mother Like Daughter at Battersea Arts Centre in partnership with Complicite, Women’s Interfaith Network and 3FF.  If you could ask your mother one question about her life, what would it be? What is the most important thing a mother can pass on to her daughter? Performed by mothers and daughters from different religions, Like Mother, Like Daughter is a celebration of the traditions we inherit and what we pass on. LBFN is offered half price tickets (£7.50) – use the promotion code “FRIEND” when booking.

Wednesday 27 – Thursday 28 May European Network on Religion and Belief AGM in Brussels, Belgium.  LBFN has been involved in setting up ENORB from the start.  The AGM is free of charge and open to all. The focus this year is “Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Religion and Belief and Solidarity: what limitations are acceptable in a plural Europe?”

Screen-Shot-2015-03-30-at-10.05.36Thursday 28 May 1pm – 8pm  Bridge the – GAP Musicians, artists and poets from all backgrounds are invited to to contribute. “This project aims to bring together residents of Camden, from all backgrounds to participate in an event to celebrate and enhance community harmony regardless of your background or beliefs. This will be achieved by designating a day to recognise and repair relationships which may have broken down, or by reaching out to someone not in our normal circle. It is a day in which we attempt to bridge the many gaps that have occurred in our relationships and community.” At Camden Lock – find details here.

lewishamSunday 31 May 1pm – 3.45pm Lewisham Inter Faith Walk for Peace with Lewisham Police and Lewisham Council, including Catford Synagogue, Lewisham Civic Centre, Lewisham Islamic Centre (where lunch will be served), Lewisham Methodist Church, Lewisham Sivan Temple and Lewisham Police Station. Download flyer.

Monday 1 June  9am – 7pm  Moving Beyond “Us” and “Them”: Challenging Discourses of Religious Otherness and Building a More Inclusive Society at Cumberland Lodge, Windsor Great Park – a forum to challenge the ‘us’ and ‘them’ divide – which is not a simple binary, but a complex relationship in which religion intersects with many other social divisions. Moving BeyondParticipants will discuss possibilities for reducing social divisions within and across groups as well as opportunities to build a more inclusive society in which the voices of Muslim and other minority religious groups are not simply heard, but also understood on equal terms to the majority religious and secular groups. LBFN’s Convener is one of the speakers along with Mohammad Saeed Bahmanpour, Islamic College of Advanced Studies, Justine Huxley of St Ethelburga’s Centre, Fiyaz Mogul, Faith Matters, and Revd Dr James Walters, LSE Chaplain.

planting seeds of hopeMonday 1 June 7pm – 9pm Planting Seeds for Hope at St Martin in the Fields Church, Trafalgar Square, WC2N 4JJ.  Join in solidarity with people across the planet as we fast and pray for the climate, leading up to the UN Climate Conference in Paris, December 2015.  An evening of silence, prayer and collective action. Download flyer.  LBFN is supporting multifaith & intercultural involvement in the lead up to the Conference.  Walking and cycling pilgrimages to Paris are being planned.

Wednesday 3 June 6.30pm Examining the Extreme: Radicalisation among Muslim Youth – Mediums and Tools with Alex Krasodomski-Jones, Demos, Naveed Sheikh, Keele University, Anthony Richards, University of East London at the Dialogue Society, 402 Holloway Road, N7 6PZ.

winindex1Saturday 6 June 10am – 4.30pm Westminster Interfaith 30th Annual Multi-Faith Pilgrimage for Peace with Hounslow Friends of Faith, starting at Laxmi Narayan Mandir, 60 Neville Close Hounslow TW3 4JG.

Sunday 7 June 4pm South London Inter Faith Group AGM at Brixton Hill Methodist Church, SW2 2TX. Download flyer.

migrationMonday 8 June 10.30am-3.30pm Day seminar on Migration with London Churches Social Action at The Abbey Centre at St Margaret’s Church, North Street, Barking, IG11 8AS. Lunch provided. “It promises to be an excellent day with fantastic contributions and plenty of opportunity for discussion. A timely opportunity for London Churches to develop some key “Common Voice” messages on this topic.”

Frontline Film ClubMonday 8 June  6.30pm LBFN’s Frontline Film Club led by 18-30s at Collaboration House, 77 Charlotte St, W1T 4PW.  Intercultural discussion group provoked by documentaries and film. Come along & have your say. Booking essential.

HFOF-logoTuesday 9 June 10am – 1.15pm  Feeling secure, keeping safe and countering hate – We Stand Together. Following on from LBFN’s meeting at New Scotland Yard last month, Hounslow Friends of Faith have organised a morning with the Metropolitan Police, Tell Mama and London Resilience at Hounslow Jamia Masjid, Wellington Road South, Hounslow TW4 5HU. Download details.

Tuesday 9 June 6pm-8pm Westminster Faith Exchange: Child Safeguarding at Lord Mayor’s Reception Rooms, 18th Floor, Westminster City Hall, 64 Victoria Street, SW1E 6QP.  Panel event looking at the work being done by local authorities, faith groups and charities to help improve the safeguarding of children. Download flyer.

SONY DSCWednesday 10 June 10am – 4.30pm Fundamentals of Project Management  Community and voluntary organisations are working hard to improve the lives of their members, users and the neighbourhoods they live in. There is never enough time or resources to do everything we would like to. Brush up on how to use your time wisely.

  • The project life-cycle
  • Attributes of an effective project manager
  • Building a diverse team
  • The project constraint triangle
  • Risk assessment
  • Finance and budgets
  • Communication and engagement
  • Tools and techniques including network analysis, Gantt charts
  • Project evaluation – soft and hard measures

An intensive day of training (reduced cost £50 for community groups) led by Steve Miller of Faith-based Regeneration Network. This series is a joint project of FbRN, LBFN and Faiths Forum for London. It will take place at our new offices at Collaboration House (Goodge St tube).

FTiL logoWednesday 10 – Thursday 11 June Mental Health First Aid Training with Faiths Together in Lambeth, TOPAZ and South London & Maudsley NHS Trust. Two day Mental Health First Aid course, free for members of FTiL, others welcome to inquire. Download flyer.

Saturday 13 or Sunday 14 June **details tbc** – contact Bethan for latest plans. 10.30am at Imperial War Museum Peace Garden & 12.30pm at Battesea Park Peace Pagoda Road to Peace Pilgrimage Walk sets off from London to Glastonbury in tribute to the Dalai Lama’s 80th year and his advocacy for Global Peace and Interfaith Harmony. “Like troubadours and pilgrims of old, we will offer screenings of Road to Peace and musical performances to local community and faith groups in towns and villages, in exchange for traditional hospitality by way of food and lodging,” Download flyer

Wednesday 17 June 4-5pm Westminster Cathedral Interfaith Group Guest speaker is Joan Salter “Being saved from the Holocaust”.  Download flyer.

Community Reconciliation St Ethelburga'sWednesday 24 June 10am – 4.30pm Community Reconciliation: Collaborative Inquiry at St Ethelburga’s Centre for Reconciliation & Peace. Full-day conference. Speakers from Search for Common Ground, Community Resolve, Corrymeela Community in Northern Ireland and Bradford University. The day will include a) Reviewing the scale and nature of the need for community reconciliation work around the UK, b) Looking at what theoretical ideas can helpfully inform practice, c) Examining approaches that have proved most useful & d) Taking stock of what resources are available to support local action. £20 including lunch. Download flyer.