Harmonies showcases variety of community faiths

NANAIMO - Harmonies in Faith event acknowledges different community beliefs.

Harmonies in Faith features performances by various community groups including Snuneymuxw drummers and Coast Salish elder and Shaker church minister Anne Bob.

Harmonies in Faith features performances by various community groups including Snuneymuxw drummers and Coast Salish elder and Shaker church minister Anne Bob.

Harmonies in Faith showcases the rich tapestry of beliefs in the Nanaimo community.

The event brings together 12 different faith groups for an evening of chants, songs, dance and spoken word. Sam Letourneau, diversity coordinator for the Central Vancouver Island Multicultural Society, said it presents the “rich diversity that exists in the community” and acknowledges the different community beliefs. The event also helps lay the foundation for “respect and understanding” and learning about the collective values everyone shares in common.

“This is the diversity of faiths and the common ground of belief in compassion and how it can bring us together,” she said.

The event at the Port Theatre tonight (Dec. 20) will include performances by Snuneymuxw drummers, Coast Salish elder and Shaker church minister Anne Bob, Vesta Fire Entertainment and Andre Nobles, St. Andrew’s United choir, Nanaimo Baha’i Faith, Nanaimo Hindu Cultural Society, Nanaimo Islamic Centre, Nanaimo Druids, Wiccans and Pagan and more.

“It’s really positive so many groups wanted to come together and share all perspectives of community faiths,” said Letourneau. “It was totally amazing so many groups wanted to be part of it.”

The diverse collaboration helps build awareness about the many faiths in Nanaimo through the universal language of music. Letourneau said singing and listening to music crosses cultural boundaries and provides a “great starting place for a dialogue based in appreciation and compassion.”

After the performances audience members will be asked to join a discussion led by Paul Bramadat, director for the Centre for Studies in Religion and Society from the University of Victoria. The discussion builds on other community dialogues the multicultural society has hosted over the last few years.

During the event Interfaith Nanaimo is accepting non-perishable food items for Loaves and Fishes and the multicultural society is also accepting donations.

All the tickets for the free event have been taken; however, there may be cancellations. People are asked to call the Port Theatre box office, 250-754-8550, to inquire if tickets are available.

arts@nanaimobulletin.com

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