January 2016 Chapters Updates
We are so happy to announce that the new year has brought three new Chapters into the fold! A warm welcome to:
- University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
- Dallas, Texas
- Texas A&M University
For a look at our complete list of Chapters, visit the "Current Chapters" page of the Euphrates website.The Seattle Chapter kicked off the new year with a planning meeting attended by 16 members. They discussed ways to participate more in the interfaith community in Seattle and expand their reading list, and created a calendar of events for the coming months. Read more below!
➜ The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (UTC) Chapter co-hosted a Roundtable Event on January 25th with their university's History Club. The topic was the Syrian Refugee Crisis, and Dr. Annie Tracy Samuel led the discussion. They've also set a date for their first official Chapter Meeting, Feb. 4th.➜ The Redding, CA Chapter met in early January to discuss Sandy Tolan's book Children of the Stone and a few days later met again to view together the wonderful CBS special highlighting Euphrates, to glean ideas for a program they're co-hosting in February with a local interfaith group. Future plans also include looking into how to sponsor one or two Syrian families through SEACM or the Refugee Resettlement Agency. In March, they will attend a Shabbat service with Rabbi Sarah at the local synagogue, and maybe follow it with kebabs at a new Syrian restaurant!
➜ The New Delhi Chapter had a great first event on December 18, International Minority Day, bringing together a group to discuss the situation of minorities in India and neighboring countries. Participants showed their concern both about rising hate incidents in India and what that means for minorities, and towards the changing social and political atmosphere in the Middle East which is felt to have a direct impact on life in India. The Chapter co-leaders felt that overall this discussion broadened the people-to-people contact in their community, a big success!
➜ The Seattle Chapter met last weekend and came away with an amazing list of things to tackle in 2016: to become more aware of the interfaith community and participate more visibly; visit a mosque; continue fostering a recent connection with a reform synagogue; helping to create a "Euphrates Club" for high schools locally; become acquainted with the Muslim Association of Puget Sound (MAPS); become more aware of the Middle East historically and culturally; share books on the Middle East and discuss with a local publishing company called Cune Press; become acquainted with the local chapter of World Relief to become more available to support refugees. They also created a calendar of events beginning in February with a Middle East potluck and Middle Eastern book share. In March the Chapter plans to watch "He Named me Malala," in support of Women's History Month!➜ The Principia Chapter has also set out some great goals for their second semester, including three lunchtime discussions, a visit to the refugee center in St. Louis to help understand better what the refugee experience in their city is like, and to visit a local mosque as a group.➜ Two of the St. Louis Chapter co-leaders went to an open house at the largest mosque in St. Louis, joining several hundred other people to meet the imam and for a tour of the mosque. The Chapter Leaders also had a planning meeting in early January, and one idea moving forward is to show Sami Awad clips at a meeting to inspire the Chapter, then invite local speaker Sandy Wilder to come and talk about ‘the Other' and how to learn to see past a sense of division.[gallery columns="2" size="medium" ids="4145,4146,4130,4148"]
World Interfaith Harmony Week is just around the corner: February 1 - 7, 2016! Groups all over the world are planning and sharing their events and celebrations -- our friends at the United Religions Initiative have compiled a map to show where and how their cooperation circles are involved. Check it out, and make sure to visit the official website of the week to see even more great events.