Well timed tour: Famous Oklahoma Town interfaith event ambitions to dispel myths ‘one youngster at a time’

5 years in the past, a fledgling interfaith event geared for younger human beings drew about forty young adults and their advisers.

Nowadays, the Oklahoma Convention of Churches’ annual Interfaith Adolescents excursion has attracted up to 300 people, filling as a minimum 4 constitution buses that journey to three houses of worship or cultural venues inside the metro region.

The Rev. William Tabbernee said the Young people tour was prepared by the Convention of Church buildings’ Religions United Committee and was held for several years before he became the business enterprise’s executive director in 2011. earlier than his involvement, the excursion turned into no longer held consecutively, but he decided it might be useful to offer it as an annual event.

The excursion’s boom is a superb indication that human beings’s interest in religions and cultures other than their very own has been piqued, Tabbernee said.
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Tabbernee stated the tour initially turned into created to coincide with International Day of Peace, on occasion unofficially known as World Peace Day, on Sept. 21.

But, he and other interfaith leaders stated the tour is especially Well timed because some faith traditions are being maligned or misrepresented via presidential election rhetoric and other manner. They said Schooling about distinct faith ideals and homes of worship is key to dispelling myths.

“We’re changing perceptions one kid at a time and overcoming stereotypes one youngster at a time,” Tabbernee said.

Cultural variations

The subsequent excursion is set for Sept. 25 and could characteristic stops at East 6th Road Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), 1139 NE 6; Masjid Mu’min Mosque, 1322 NE 23; and Vien-Giac Buddhist Temple, 5101 NE 36.
Picture – A church chief talks to youths and their person advisers in the course of a go to to St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral as a part of the Oklahoma Convention of Churches’ 2015 Interfaith Teens excursion in Oklahoma Town. [Photo provided] Picture – College students pay attention to Rabbi Vered Harris inside the sanctuary at Temple B’nai Israel throughout the Oklahoma Conference of Churches’ 2013 Interfaith Teens tour in Oklahoma Metropolis. [Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman Archives] Image – Dr. Riaz Ahmad, proper, prays at the same time as, behind him, humans of various religions tour Masjid An-Nasr, the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma Metropolis’s mosque, at some point of the Oklahoma Convention of Church buildings’ 2011 Interfaith Adolescents excursion in Oklahoma Metropolis. [The Oklahoman Archives photo]

Previous excursions have included Frontline Church-downtown Oklahoma City, Grand Mosque, Temple B’nai Israel, Mayflower Congregational United Church of Christ, Sikh Gurdwara of Oklahoma Town, St. John Missionary Baptist Church, Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma Metropolis’s mosque, Edmond Baha’i faith Middle, St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral, the Hindu Temple of Oklahoma City and St. George Greek Orthodox Church.
Adam Soltani is executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Family members’ Oklahoma chapter, but he additionally serves as chairman of the Religions United Committee that coordinates the Kids tour.

He said he endorsed that the excursion consist of houses of worship inside the northeast metro region due to the fact among the excursion contributors have no longer had opportunities to visit that part of the network at massive.

The tour covered the Vien-Giac Buddhist Temple numerous years ago, but that is the first 12 months East 6th Avenue Christian Church and Masjid Mu’min Mosque, both predominantly black, have been featured.

Soltani said it is essential to expose the young humans that congregations that share faith traditions with other houses of worship may additionally have variations in cultural practices and other aspects.

“They’ll discover that Christianity and Islam do no longer have one appearance, however they exist in different cultures within their own Town,” Soltani stated.

Firsthand appearance

The Muslim chief and Rabbi Vered Harris stated the excursion offers younger people a front-and-Center check out faith traditions other than their own.

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