News & Events Archive
Annual Interfaith Thanksgiving Observance
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
First United Methodist Church-Chicago Temple
Sponsored by: Council of Religious Leaders of Metropolitan Chicago in cooperation with First United Methodist Church at Chicago Temple.
Prayers, readings and music were offered by different religious communities.
In keeping with tradition, donations were collected to provide THANKSGIVING MEALS FOR THOSE IN NEED.
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Immigration Press Conference
Chicago area’s religious leaders call on Congress to act with urgency and pass immigration reform
-Religious leaders say action on immigration reform is a “moral responsibility” and call on Congress to resolve differences and allow the democratic process to work.
-Leaders call on more than five million multi-faith congregants to contact their Members of Congress and continue prayer, education and action.
-Rarity of gathering underscores deep, diverse public support for immigration reform.
CHICAGO, Ill., Nov. 19, 2013 – In an unprecedented coming together of diverse religions,leaders representing several faiths across the Chicago area convened to reject recent public pronouncements that immigration reform was dead and demand that Congress, including the Illinois Congressional Delegation, act on immigration reform with a sense of urgency.
“If these diverse religions can come together today and find common ground on immigration reform, so can Congress,” said Very Reverend Donald Senior. “This issue carries moral responsibility for people of faith, enough to transcend differences. Our elected officials must embrace this example.”
The religious leaders, including Rabbi Shoshanah Conover, Temple Sholom of Chicago; Pastor Wilfredo De Jesus, New Life Covenant Church; Francis Cardinal George, OMI, Archbishop of Chicago; Rt. Rev. Jeffrey Lee, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago; Imam Matthew Ramadan, Deputy Executive Director, The Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago and Very Rev. Donald Senior, President, Council of Religious Leaders of Metropolitan Chicago, collectively represent more than five million multi-faith congregants across the Chicago area.
“As far as we’re concerned, deferral is denial,” said Francis Cardinal George. “Over the next several weeks, elected officials will be hearing from people of faith, in mass, with one simple message: this issue is incredibly important to us and Congress must act with urgency.”
A stunning 1,100 families across the country are separated each day by deportations. The religious leaders discussed the number of deportations, as well as the overwhelming public support for immigration reform, stating that their congregants are unwilling to wait any longer for their elected officials to debate and vote on the issue.
“As people of faith, we are called to give aid and comfort to immigrants. More than a public policy issue, people of faith see this issue as a fundamental matter of how we must treat one another to become the kind of people God calls on us to be,” said Rabbi Shoshanah Conover.
The religious leaders also outlined various initiatives that each of their communities are organizing including “Immigration Sabbath,” a 40-day call to action where people of faith pray, reflect and mobilize around immigration reform, and “40 Days of Prayer, Fasting and Action for Congress,” which will extend through Advent and Christmas.
“We believe the inaction on this issue is a temporary stumbling block. Through continued prayer, education and action, we believe Congress will do the right thing,” said Pastor Wilfredo De Jesus.
"As people of faith, we are mandated to welcome the stranger in our midst, for we too once wandered in a strange land," said Bishop Jeffrey Lee. "Now, across Illinois, we are speaking with one voice: Congress must put aside partisan politics in favor of moral courage. Our communities cannot wait. Too many families have been torn apart, too many hardworking people have been forced to live in the shadows in fear. The time for immigration reform is now."
“Our message will continue beyond today,” said Imam Matthew Ramadan. “Muslims, Jews, and Christians alike will be hearing this message in their mosques, temples and churches across the Chicago area. Doing nothing is not an option and, in the coming weeks, Members of Congress will be hearing that message from people of faith.”
Joshua DuBois, author of The President's Devotional
Benefit Dinner for Bethlehem University
Friday, November 1, 2013. 6:30 pm. Oak Park Country Club
AT THIS CRITICAL TIME YOU ARE CALLED
The call is for peace in the Middle East.
The call is for inter-religious understanding.
The call is for a viable future for young men and women in the Holy Land.
HEED THE CALL AND SUPPORT BETHLEHEM UNIVERSITY
This year Bethlehem University is celebrating 40 years of serving the educational and professional development needs of the Palestinian community in the West Bank and fostering inter-religious dialogue. Founded and sponsored by the Vatican and the De La Salle Christian Brothers, it is the first Catholic University in the Holy Land and the first in the West Bank. More than 3,000 students are enrolled annually in bachelor, master, and professional diploma programs. 75% of the students are women. 70% are Muslim. 30% are Christian. Bethlehem University is an “oasis of peace” and a “beacon of hope.”
Guests of Honor:
His Eminence Francis Cardinal George, Grand Prior, EOHSJ (North Central Lieutenancy)
Bro. Peter Bray, Vice-Chancellor & CEO, Bethlehem University
Donna M. Carroll, President, Dominican University
Anan Abu-Taleb, Oak Park Village President
His Excellency Sir Charles Foos, EOHSJ
Sponsored by the Knights and Ladies of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem of the Chicago and Joliet Dioceses (North Central Lieutenancy of North America)
Barbara Byrd-Bennett visits the CRLMC
On October 24, 2013, Barbara Byrd-Bennett, CEO of Chicago Public Schools, spoke at the CRLMC meeting. Barbara informed us about the many initiatives underway within the Chicago Public Schools system, future hopes for the city's children, and ways everyone can get involved.
A Healthcare Education Conference for Religious and Community Leaders
October 1-2, 2013. The Conference gathered at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary and satellite sites in Chicago (North Side, South Side, and Aurora) and Geneva, IL. It was also streamed to AAPC (American Association of Pastoral Counseling) sites across the country. On Tuesday night, the Conference began at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary with a plenary session featuring the Rev. Gary Gunderson, Professor of Faith and Health of the Public, Wake Forest University School of Divinity. The introductory plenary was web streamed to all satellite sights. On Wednesday, all campuses hosted a morning plenary and then gathered in small groups focused on empowering congregational leaders to help constituents access health care benefits.
The Conference was sponsored by Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, the American Association of Pastoral Counselors and the Center for Religion and Psychotherapy of Chicago in partnership with The Campaign for Better Health Care, The Center for Faith and Community Health Transformation: Advocate Health System, Samaritan Counseling Center in Naperville and the Center for Religion and Psychotherapy of Chicago.
One Nation. One Family. One Dream. A Concert for the Journey.
September 30, 2013. Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I., Archbishop of Chicago and The Office for Immigrant Affairs and Immigration Education hosted a night of music and celebration to benefit the Office for Immigrant Affairs and Immigration Education.
Statement on the Death of Bishop Timothy J. Lyne
The Council of Religious Leaders of Metropolitan Chicago mourns the loss of one of our founders and past presidents, Bishop Timothy Lyne. Bishop Lyne died on Wednesday, September 25th at the rectory at Holy Name Cathedral. He was an early leader in ecumenical and interreligious activities in the Chicago metropolitan area. Throughout his long ministry, Bishop Lyne was a consist voice for the inclusion of all persons of faith at tables of dialogue, understanding and social action. Above all Bishop Lyne was a man of deep faith. Tim was the grandest of men and the dearest of friends to many of us. His sweet spirit and wise counsel were God's gift for so many years. We shall miss him dearly.
Sharing Faith: Seek First to Understand