Baha'i News -- A Day Like No Other: Faiths Find Common Message

A Day Like No Other: Faiths Find Common Message

Source: Columbian
Publication date: 2002-09-12

A year ago, the Rev. R. Tom Tucker couldn't name a single Muslim friend.

But Wednesday evening, Tucker stood in Esther Short Park, alongside his friend, Shaaban Naim of the Islamic Society of Southwest Washington, in remembering the victims of the 9/11 attacks.

As about 400 people sat on blankets and lawn chairs, an American Indian, Lionel Pinn of Battle Ground, used a native drum to usher in an interfaith service with a message of peace.

Boy Scouts from Troop 316 passed out candles, and twinkling lights were shared from visitor to visitor as the evening progressed.

Prayers came from an Aleut, Larry Chercasen, in a language 10,000 years old, and from the Baha'i and Christian faiths.

"Oh Allah, save humanity from being its own enemy," Naim prayed. "Protect us all from oppression, violence, fear and danger. You are the protector. Oh Allah, join our hearts, and bring all humans closer to You and each other."

A similar prayer, said in ancient Aramaic, came from Raida Diamond and Marcialee Gans, representing Congregation Kol Ami of the Jewish faith: "For us and all the world, may the blessing of peace and promise of life come true, and let us say Amen."

Pinn, whose family is from the Micmac tribe of Nova Scotia, closed the service with a quiet song, tapping his drum and, silently, tapping his heart.

The service was sponsored by the Islamic Society and the Greater Vancouver Interfaith Association.

©Copyright 2002, Columbian (Vancouver, Canada)

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