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Newsletters from the Parliament of Religions. 2011, June. GOOD NEWS that is not reported in the maintream media...

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Online Interfaith Media:

Odyssey Networks’ Journey

by Rev.  Eric C.  Shafer

Odyssey Networks


It was 1987 and America was riveted by the “televangelist” scandals—celebrity TV ministries collecting millions of dollars in donations that ended up supporting their own lavish lifestyles.  In response, the leaders of the cable industry met with major US faith leaders, all determined to restore the integrity of faith on television.  Together they founded the National Interfaith Cable Coalition (NICC) and underwrote what would become its Odyssey Channel, giving the new interfaith offering carriage on cable systems throughout the United States.


Fast forward to 2011: Today the media is not plagued by scandal but fueled by it.  “Controversy sells.” In religion this means an emphasis on conflict rather than cohesion, strife rather than working together.


Click here to read the full article...




Obama's Middle East Speech: Religious Leaders Respond

by Jaweed Kaleem


Religious leaders are responding to President Barack Obama's much-anticipated speech on the Middle East, in which the president said that "all faiths must be respected" and suggested "bridges be built among them."






Claremont becomes

Multi-Religious School

by Larry Gordon


Leaders of the Claremont School of Theology will announce Monday the gift of $40 million from an Arizona couple to help expand the Christian divinity institution into a university that will include training for Jewish and Muslim clergy.






Graduation is a Sacred Moment of Many

by Matt Idom


Seated on the front row of the second level of the Texas Tech gym makes it hard to "feel" the pomp and circumstance of the commencement proceedings as the class of 2011 marches in.  This is a seat intended to place one over the fast break and the last second shot, not a daughter's moment.


But it is a moment, a sacred moment.



My Story

by Dr.  Tarunjit Singh Butalia

CPWR Trustee


While growing up as a kid in northern India in the early 1980s, I fondly remember one of my best friends in high school, Sher Ali Khan.  He was a devout Muslim.


While in 9th grade, Sher Ali called me over to his home for the Islamic festival of Eid.  The food at the table was overflowing and beautifully decorated.  But a dilemma faced me soon.  All the meat on the table was halal – a special religious technique of preparation of meat in the Islamic faith that I as a Sikh was forbidden to eat, due to the Sikh Rehat Maryada (Principles of Sikh Living).  So I chose to stay a silent vegetarian that day partaking only of vegetables and sweets.

A couple of months later, he was over at our home for dinner and we had cooked meat without any religious preparation.  Since the meat was not halal, Sher Ali became a vegetarian for that meal.


At that time I thought that our religions were getting in the way of our friendship.  But as I reflect on it now, it seems that we were learning how to negotiate our religious differences.





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Upcoming Opportunities:


Our Better Angels: New York Religious Leaders Commemorate the 10th Anniversary of 9/11

June 6, June 13


Building Abrahamic Partnerships

June 19-26


Call for Submissions: Role of Religion in Revolution

Deadline: September 1








Learning from the

Egyptian Revolution


June 8, 2011

10:00am U.S.  Central Time


Ahmed Rehab

Executive Director

Council on American-Islamic Relations


The Egyptian Revolution saw one of the largest and most comprehensive peaceful revolutions in history.  12 million people took to the streets in a period of 18 days to oust a 30 year autocratic president and a 60 year entrenched regime.  Ahmed Rehab, who participated in the Tahrir Square movement, shares his first-hand account.  Learn More...


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