rowanf: (Interfaith Today)
[personal profile] rowanf
This morning I went to Mayor Chuck Reed's Faith Appreciation Breakfast, an annual event that brings together leaders of the San Jose Faith communities and offers a chance to recognize City/Faith community partnerships.

The Mayor had some opening remarks, commenting on how the City can try to address material needs but the faith communities address spiritual needs. The Notre Dame San Jose Chorus sang "Seasons of Love" from Rent. An Invocation was offered by Imam Tahir Anwar of the South Bay Islamic Association and Councilmember Sam Liccardo offered a reading from Matthew (about doing for the least of these you do for me).

The three projects that were highlighted were

(1) The Parent Project, a family engagement and empowerment program represented by District Attorney, Jeff Rosen. This is a project that has about a dozen parent groups (in English & Spanish with a Vietnamese language group starting after the first of the year) that work on how to help parent high risk youth. The local contact is <parentproject@da.sccgov.org>. More info on the national program can be seen at <http://www.parentproject.com/>.

(2) Housing 1000, a campaign to house homeless men and women in Santa Clara County by 2013. They would like to partner with congregations to "adopt" a homeless person and provide a support system. They also accept donations at <http://www.housing1000sv.org/> and ask for donations of used furniture and kitchen and cleaning supplies to help get the newly sheltered up to speed.

(3) Mayor's Gang Prevention Task Force Faith Initiative. They are working to achieve zero gang related homicides in San Jose. Faith communities are providing community space in times of crisis and pastoral counseling to those caught in gang violence. They current have nine Chaplains have been providing "compassion, aftercare, and services to gang impacted families/ individuals and assisting residents in times of crisis and trauma". They are talking about initiating "Night Walks" such as used by Operation Ceasefire in Oakland to get people out on the street at night. <http://www2.oaklandnet.com/government/o/mayor/i/ceasefire/index.htm>

There were closing remarks and schmoozing. I think it was very worthwhile to attend. I believe this is the first year a Wiccan has been at the breakfast.

MayorReed&ImamTahirAnwar.jpg

More pix at Flickr which is being totally awful these days.
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