Interfaithfully: let’s work together for peace at panel discussion

By Claremont Interfaith Council

For almost 20 years, an interfaith group in Claremont has been seeking ways to increase possibilities for peace in the Middle East. Since its inception, the mission of the Inland Valley Interfaith Working Group for Peace in the Middle East has been to build relationships of peace here, which in turn can impact relationships in the Middle East.

In response to the concerns raised at the recent Claremont  City Council meeting and the overall challenge of how to respond to the warfare and humanitarian crisis in Israel and Gaza, this organization is joining the University of La Verne in hosting a forum, entitled “Israel and Palestine Panel Conversation” at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, April 14 on the University of La Verne campus. The panel includes Gary Gilbert, associate professor of religious studies at Claremont McKenna College; Dr. Ahmed Sobol; and Professor Emeritus at Cal State LA and activist Andy Winnick will offer Jewish, Muslim, and Christian perspectives, on which they have a vast array of knowledge and experience.

The working group grew out of a 2006 workshop at Claremont School of Theology that was organized by members from Temple Beth Israel, Claremont Islamic Center, and various Christian congregations. At the conclusion of the workshop, the planning committee chose to continue to meet in hopes of creating further opportunities to promote the momentum of peace-making within our community. Since then the working group has hosted an annual walk for peace, including visits to our local mosque, Islamic school, Jewish temple, and a Christian congregation. The walk, in which many local residents have taken part, ends with a shared meal.

The working group also plans a yearly educational event for the Claremont community. Congresswoman Judy Chu has often participated in both the walk for peace and our educational events.

While the working group is not an official part of the Claremont Interfaith Council, it endorses its events, in which many of CIC members take part. You can learn more about the Inland Valley Interfaith Working Group for Peace at its Facebook page, We also encourage you to check out the Claremont Interfaith Council’s Facebook page at for various events sponsored by our group to promote harmony within our community.

We hope for a good showing from the Claremont community at the panel discussion on April 14. See you there!

The Claremont Interfaith Council is a collaborative association of faith communities and nonprofit organizations that serve Claremont residents. We exist to build relationships and understanding among our members and to engage in community issues of common concern.



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