It’s no secret today’s world has its challenges. With growing political controversies in our own country, horrendous suffering in war-torn regions across the globe, and violence and unjust discrimination all around, it can be hard to make sense of it all.
Many turn to spirituality in hopes of finding some sort of peace, light and understanding. And with more than 4,000 religions practiced internationally, there are a variety of spiritual paths and world views to be explored.
Louisville’s Center for Interfaith Relations believes that all of us are on a journey and we share something in common: We all are searching for meaning.
“Many Faiths, One Heart, Common Action”
As an organization that’s dedicated to strengthening the role of faith in society and our community, the Center for Interfaith Relations aims to celebrate the timeless wisdom contained in the diversity of the world’s faith traditions and to celebrate our interconnectedness.
Whether you identify with Christianity, Islam, Judaism, other religious views or no religion at all, the Center welcomes all voices. At the same time, the organization provides several platforms for you to engage with people from diverse spiritual as well as secular backgrounds. This can all be summed up in the organization’s motto of “Many Faiths, One Heart, Common Action.”
The organization’s mission is fulfilled in Louisville through a series of events held throughout the year. The Center calls these, “Conversations on Meaning,” panel discussions that address universal topics, as well as current and pressing local issues, from violence to activism, philanthropy, music and race, through a spiritual lens.
Other activities hosted by the Center for Interfaith Relations include pop-up events for people of all ages and religious beliefs, as well as the highly anticipated annual marquee event, the “Festival of Faiths.” The Festival has featured prominent faith and thought leaders from around the world, along with well-known local figures like Teddy Abrams, Jecorey ‘1200’ Arthur and Mayor Fischer.
The Festival unites people in conversation from varying backgrounds through music, poetry, film, art and dialogue in an inspiring celebration.
Make plans to attend the Festival of Faiths in April 2017!
Spanning five days, the Festival of Faiths offers programming that “honors the union between thinking globally and acting locally.”
In recent years, the Festival has become nationally recognized with audience members attending from all over the world. While each of the Festival’s events is hosted in an intimate setting with an audience of 400 – 600 guests, the Festival reaches thousands more through a livestream feed on its website, the Faith Channel and other social media and TV outlets.
The past four Festivals have taken place at Actors Theatre of Louisville after the city’s annual Derby festivities. The 22nd annual Festival of Faiths will commence early in 2017 from April 19 – 24, with events held at The Kentucky Center for the Arts, the Cathedral of the Assumption and the KFC Yum! Center.
Starting and ending each of the sessions over the five days is a three-minute period of silence. The days’ morning events feature talks delivered by notable spiritual and thought leaders, punctuated by artistic interludes. The afternoons include short talks, followed by lively exchanges from a panel of speakers and a question-and-response session. Each day concludes with a special musical or artistic offering or special guest speaker.
Previous guest speakers featured at the Festival of Faiths have included Karen Armstrong, Wendell Berry, Robert F. Kennedy, Bill McKibben, Archbishop Joesph Kurtz, Joan Brown Campbell, Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, Muhammad Ali, Roshi Joan Halifax and many others. The 2017 Festival will culminate with His Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama speaking at two public events, one for the general public and one for area youth (KFC Yum! Center, April 23 and 24, 2017). His visit is hosted by the City of Louisville, partnering with the Center for Interfaith Relations, the Drepung Gomang Center for Engaging Compassion and the International Compassionate Cities Center.
Discover the Center for Interfaith Relations today
The Center for Interfaith Relations is located in historic downtown Louisville at 415 W. Muhammad Ali Blvd. For more information on the organization, its pop-up events and the Festival of Faiths, visit its website and check out its YouTube channel.
The 22nd annual Festival of Faiths, “Compassion: Shining like the Sun,” will focus on universal human values, nonviolence and the many local and global issues our city faces, through the lens of sacred wisdom. To learn more about the topic and the Festival’s speakers and schedule, visit the Center for Interfaith Relations’ website: centerforinterfaithrelations.org and festivaloffaiths.org.