Love Thy Neighbor

The theme of this year's program is "Rebuilding Hope." It will be held on Thursday, September 10, 2020, at 6PM and live streamed from our YouTube channel.

This year we will have special guests from Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist religions joining us from all around the world. We hope you will join us at our YouTube channel and learn how the scriptures and traditions from world religions help us rebuild hope at this time when our hope is being greatly challenged by world events.

2020 Love Thy Neighbor Speakers:

Rabbi Hara Person (New York, NY): Rabbi Person is the Chief Executive of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, the Reform Rabbinic leadership organization. Previously, she was the Editor-in-Chief of URJ (the Union for Reform Judaism) Books and Music, where she was responsible for the revision of The Torah: A Modern Commentary (2005) and the publication of many significant projects. Rabbi Person was also the Managing Editor of The Torah: A Women's Commentary, named the National Jewish Book Award Book of the Year in 2008.

Lama Tenzin (India): Lama Tenzin is a Tibetan Buddist monk that has worked for the past 20 years to help educate and raise abandoned and neglected young children from the Upper Dolpo region of the Himalyan border between Nepal, India and Tibet. The trek from their impoverished villages to the orphanage he founded in Dehradun, India takes 20-30 days, 10 hours a day at altitudes of 18,000 feet in treacherous conditions. Lama Tenzin has founded three schools to educate the children in the orphanage  so that they may become independent adults and establish professional careers.

Sonam Phutti Gurung (India): Sonam was rescued by Lama Tenzin (see above) as a young child and she was raised and educated in the orphanage and in the schools he established. Sonam has earned a Master’s Degree in Human Resource Management and is currently an intern at Salesforce.

MarQuis Hunt (Little Rock, Arkansas): An award-winning Jazz musician, MarQuis is also a writer, poet, speaker, personal success coach, and a founding partner of Group 622, a business incubation consultancy. MarQuis volunteers his time in the Christian community and as a local community organizer.

Shabari Ursula Honegger (Switzerland): Ursula Honegger is the President of the Datta Kriya Yoga Center of Switzerland, an organization that works to build bridges between cultures and their spiritual traditions as well as supporting humanitarian work in India. Shabari Honegger is a devotee of Sri Ganapathy Sachchidananda Swamiji, and a Guru of Datta Kriya Yoga, a specific method of breathing exercises, meditation and the practice of silence developed by Sri Swamijii.

Shaykh Didmar Faja (Phoenix, Arizona): Shaykh Faja is the Imam of the United Islamic Center of Arizona. Born in Albania, he was educated in Albania, Turkey, and the United States. Shaykh Faja is the founder of an Islamic school in Phoenix and is the founder and director of two Islamic Centers in Mexico. He is a religious and spiritual advisor for Naqshbandiyya Foundation for Islamic Education (NFIE) where he delivers a monthly address on topics relating to Islamic spirituality and an instructor at Madina Institute USA in Atlanta, GA. Shaykh Faja is a prolific public speaker, an organizer in the interfaith community, and the author of many books.

Love Thy Neighbor began as a peace-oriented service on the grounds of the House of Prayer, marking the 10th anniversary of September 11, 2001 as an opportunity to draw people together who are dedicated to peace in our community and the world. The Interfaith Center and its sister organization, Arkansas House of Prayer are honored to hold wonderful event year after year.

The Interfaith Center is a part of the Institute for Theological studies at St. Margaret’s, and its mission is to reduce the hatred and fear among the world religions (theinterfaithcenter.org).

Located in West Little Rock on the campus of St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church, Arkansas House of Prayer is set apart in Nature, dedicated to contemplative prayer, meditation, and quiet, where all are welcome (arkansashouseofprayer.org).