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NAINConnect 2012 Comes to Atlanta Next Month

By TIO Staff


Twenty-four-year-old North American Interfaith Network (NAIN) convenes on July 15 for four days to explore “Creating Interfaith-Friendly Cities and the Beloved World Community.” The general public is invited to register and attend.

NAIN is North America’s most inclusive grassroots interfaith organization. It is volunteer led (no staff), spends half its annual budget subsidizing remarkable Youth Scholars, and is one of the richest environments you can find for getting acquainted with new and seasoned interfaith activists from across Canada and the United States.

This Year’s Gathering

Atlanta may not be known as a hotbed of interfaith activity, but it should be for some special reasons. Its quest for interracial solidarity in Atlanta has gone hand-in-hand with its quest for a healthy interreligious culture, a singular success that cities everywhere might learn from. NAINConnect will show how they’ve done this.

Atlanta’s religious history is rich. The largest single community is Southern Baptist, not typically inclined to ecumenical or interfaith activities. But Atlanta is also home of Morehouse College, where interfaith pioneer Howard Thurman graduated, and Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Martin Luther King Sr. and his son Martin Luther King Jr. were pastors. Today the city and region have rich multiple layers of interfaith relationship and activity, many of which will be experienced at the Connect.

Keynote presentations will come from…

  • Tayyibah Taylor, interfaith champion and founder of the magazine Azizah, a place for Muslim women in America,
  • GeraldDurley, veteran of the Civil Rights movement, a global interfaith activist, and pastor of Providence Missionary Baptist Church in Atlanta for 25 years; and
  • Jan Swanson, known for her international interfaith friendship pilgrimages, a founding member of the Faith Alliance of Metro Atlanta, and a director of Interfaith Community Initiatives.
Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Martin Luther King Jr. and his father served as pastors.

Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Martin Luther King Jr. and his father served as pastors.

Twenty-two workshops will be presented by interfaith leaders from across the continent. Registration includes field trips that will include the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site, the Carter Center, and Morehouse College.

TIO is not the ‘voice’ of NAIN, but a dues-paying member (which is not required to attend the Connect). TIO believes in what NAIN is doing and is a strong promoter of the annual connect. NAINConnect 2012 has its own website where you can fill in all the details and register.

So if you can get to Atlanta next month and have a passion for a vibrant, constructive interfaith culture, NAIN could be your catnip this year.