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BU's Alison Marshall, Bruce Sarbit and student Crystalena Moffat to speak at event honouring freedom of religion

November 23, 2006

Source: Brandon University

As the 25th anniversary approaches of the adoption of a key United Nations document on freedom of religion, members of the Bahá’í community of Westman are inviting people of all faiths to a Multi-Faith Devotional Gathering to reflect on the freedoms enshrined in the document at a gathering that will feature talks by Brandon University staff members Dr. Alison Marshall (Department of Religion) and Bruce Sarbit (Student Services), as well as Brandon University student Crystalena Moffat.

Dr. Marshall will speak on the Brandon Labyrinth of Peace, a project that she coordinated and saw to fruition with the help of BU professor Dr. John Everitt and several BU students. Located across from Kircaldy School on the Assiniboine River Corridor, the Labyrinth of Peace exists as a symbol of religious tolerance and peace and contains the symbols of 10 different religious communities and cultures in Brandon: Baha'i, Buddhism, Christianity, Daoism, Earth Religions, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Native Religions, and Sikhism. Dr. Marshall will also discuss the practice of mindfulness in Buddhism and the understanding of the skandas, or five aggregates that create discrimination.

BU Student Services Counsellor Bruce Sarbit will speak on Judaism, and Crystalena Moffat will speak on Muslim faith. Other presentations will include talks on Christianity, and Native Spirituality and the Circle of Unity.

The gathering, which will also include prayers and readings from several different faiths, takes place on November 25th at 2:00 pm at The Faith Center at CFB Shilo, Manitoba, (Building #T-119 - at the corner of Royal and Notre Dame) a new building where all faiths are welcome. This facility is the first of its kind on any military base in Canada. Admission is free and all are welcome.

The Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in 1981. Its tenets include the right to choose one’s religion and the right of parents to raise their children according to the religion of their choosing. The Bahá’í’s want their prayer gathering to celebrate the advances that the document has helped forge, but also to recognize the progress that has yet to be made in many parts of the world.

Read the original UN Declaration on religion here:

For more information, please contact:

Thelma Brown
Media Representative
Bahá’í Community of Westman
Phone: (204) 726-1274

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