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Learn about Louisville’s Faith Communities at the 2012 Festival of Faiths

The 16th annual Festival of Faiths celebrates the theme of “Sacred Air: Breath of Life” with a schedule that includes panels and workshops with notable individuals, including author and activist Bill McKibben and Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies Professor Mary Evelyn Tucker. The Henry Clay Building, 604 S. Third St., will serve as the headquarters for this year’s Festival, presented by The Center for Interfaith Relations.

The Festival will also host screenings of award winning films, including “Air: The Search for One Clean Breath,” “Journey of the Universe,” and “Carbon Nation.” Two days of yoga workshops and youth and adult choir competitions are scheduled. More events are currently being added, and you can call (502) 583-3100 or visit the web site www.festivaloffaiths.org for information.

he Festival explores and celebrates one of the main questions asked by the Center for Interfaith Relations: “What if we took the time to meet a Muslim, Jew, Hindu, or Buddhist? What if we saw we had more in common than we thought, but emerged stronger in our own faith?”

Every year for the last 16 years, the Festival has chosen one theme that unites us all, and serves as a common thread to explore, explain, and discuss our faiths, what makes each different and what they have in common. This year, that thread that unites us all is air. Without this element, life ceases to exist, and yet, we often pay little attention to this crucial resource.

Stationed at the Henry Clay throughout will be more than 60 communities of faith, individuals, non-profits, academic institutions, and artists. Visit the booths to learn about other faiths, network, exchange ideas, and share your commitment with others. Interfaith meditation exercises will also be offered throughout the Festival. Many events are free and open to the public.

A highlight of this year’s program is a Sabbath Service in memory of Isaac Bernheim to be held on Friday, October 28, 7:30 p.m. at The Temple. On Tuesday, November 1, a Seder for the Skies will also be held at The Temple. It will be an environmentally-inspired Seder that emphasizes the images of sky as “Sacred Air” in the Bible and Jewish worship. The event is free and open to the public, but reservations are required, as space is limited.

Another popular event is the Children of Abraham Dinner, an annual event that brings together members of the Jewish, Christian and Islamic traditions. This year’s dinner will be hosted by the Muslim community of Louisville on Monday, November 7, at the Nur Islamic School of Louisville, 6500 Six Mile Lane. Dinner will be followed by a worship service. All are welcome to participate in the service following dinner, but dinner reservations are required ($20 each).

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