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Comparative Religion Lesson 2

#1 User is offline   J. Carpenter 

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Posted 13 March 2016 - 05:13 PM

I enjoyed reviewing this past weeks lesson. Interfaith was a key topic through the lesson. Also earlier last week we had visiting friends from the Northwest. We were discussing various religious matters when what came up on their part, but interfaith. When I asked the husband what he was doing in regard to interfaith he mentioned a program called Family Promise.

Family Promise is a national program that works to provide temporary housing/shelter to families with children. In this example of the program in a city in the Northwest a “family” could be one or two parents with a child or children, a grandparent and a grandchild, etc. These are basically families that are homeless. In this case the various churches in town participate in providing a place to sleep and eat for a week at a time. There is one location that provides assistance with job finding skills, job searches, etc.
In this case that location also has shower facilities as all churches may not be equipped with showers, etc. As for our old church up there the church provides sleeping space and another denomination provides the food/meals which is brought to the housing church.
The families are pre-screened as there cannot be any drug abuse, domestic abuse, etc.

One example that my friend shared was a lady with her children that previously had been in a shelter for 10 months and was in no better shape financially as when she went in the shelter. After being in the Family Promise program and she was able to improve her job skills she was able to get a job and an apartment and take care of her children.

This program sounds like a great way that religions of various denominations can work together to provide a service to the homeless and children in particular. Unfortunately one church in the city would not participate as they felt they could not work with a particular denomination. It is sad that they could not put doctrine aside to work for the common good of families in a less fortunate situation.

Also when the families are being cared for by the different denominations it is a rule that the churches cannot “preach” to the families thereby not putting any pressure on them or
possibly making them feel uncomfortable.

What a wonderful way to have interfaith experiences.

Also within this lesson I found it interesting reviewing the religious observances that were listed. It was a very encompassing list of observances.

I’m happy how this Comparative Religion course and the Master of Chaplaincy course that I’m taking compliment each other and are helping to make me a better minister.
Rev. John Carpenter, D.D.(h.c.)
Ordained minister of the Universal Life Church

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