International, Interfaithing by Zoom
Five of us stayed the course over the last two years. None of us totally sure what kept us coming back but we did. Tonight we would wait and see whether participants from this year’s Summer school would join us. Don’t know why but I was nervous. I was excited at new additions but also wanted to ensure we made it worth their while.
You know how you wait on Zoom for people to show up? All five of us had gotten there before 7 pm London time and then people began to appear, Tom, Scott, Goldie and Rico.
I still marvel that we find ourselves in one place as we sit in England, Canada, the United States and Jerusalem. Half of the group I have only ever met on Zoom the other half I met in person in Jerusalem this summer and now I am meeting them on Zoom.
After we said our hellos we began. Each of us introduced ourselves and told the meaning of our name, if we knew. Well it may seem like a simple exercise but it generated further questions and knowledge about naming traditions. Remember here we were Muslims, Jews and Christians. Faith along with tradition plays a role for some in naming traditions.
Mandy that person who brings people together then spoke about why we came together in the first place and what has kept us coming back.
Shahid, Johnston, Rose and James the class of 2020 spoke of why they also kept coming. It was something about the informality and the egalitarian nature of our Meets. Someone may pick a subject related to faith, say something about it and from there a conversation grows.
We have covered different subjects; a chapter of the Qu’ran, did a Bibliodrama, composed Haikus and the like.
We then moved on to our second question, “Why are we interested in Interfaith?”
Without rehearsing each person’s contribution I heard that it connects us to others that we may never connect with. When we connect we can then learn so much more than we ever knew. As one of our number put it, “We learn about who we are by relating to the other.”