SLU celebrates faith Tuesday

Saint Louis University’s annual Interfaith Celebration, a chance for those of all faiths to unite in prayer, will be held at 12:20 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 4 in the St. Francis Xavier College Church.

This year’s theme for the celebration is “Wholly People of Faith,” and it is a time for sharing values and beliefs with members of the SLU community.

“Especially in this era, with the threat of war and Sept. 11, we like to say we tolerate people,” said Kimberly Woods-Hopwood, coordinator of the event, “but tolerance is not enough. We need to learn from each other.”

Woods-Hopwood said the celebration is an opportunity to “link and resource with other people on a global level; know each other, learn about each other.”

Another goal of the interfaith celebration is to reduce fears of approaching other people, Woods-Hopwood said. This is a chance to get to know members of other faiths and have a chance to understand them and their religions better.

Readings about peace from several faiths will be featured, including Ba’hai, Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam and Judaism.

The a capella group Bare Naked Statues, the gospel ensemble Melody of Praise and the University Mass Choir will all provide musical entertainment.

Classes will be canceled from 12:15 p.m. to 2 p.m. so that all students, faculty and staff are able to attend. “Classes may be off, but it is a time on an educational point,” Woods-Hopwood said. Last year the celebration drew in between 700 and 750 attendees, and more is hoped to attend this year.

Lunch will be served in the church ballroom following the celebration.

Shuttle services will be available to those on the Health Sciences campus.