Wow, What an experience for me it was to say the least. I can honestly that I had no preconceived notions about this event, only because I didn’t know what to expect either way. A few words to describe this experience would be informative and diverse from a Religion and Audience standpoint.
Upon entering the Venue where the experience had taken place, I shifted into pure observation mode to better understand the audience that it catered to. I felt a bitat ease with the hospitality that was given prior to finding a seat, but felt a little under educated about what I was about to intake from the guest speakers.
Shifting towards the actual event:Quick facts that I learned : The website is 100% Solar Powered Website, and the programs that were passed out were made from recyclable products, which informed me how environmental friendly the organization was.
Overall Synopsis of Sacred Journeys:
The first speaker of the morning was Dr. William F. Vendley, who identified himself as a Roman Catholicand currently serves as the Secretary General of Religions for Peace International. With his many personal accolades it made me want to do my own personal research during his dialogue.Dr. William explained his interesting Journey, highlighting his position to allow religions to collaborate with one another to reach a common goal of partnership.His Journey through his studies include, moving to France with his Girl friend at the tender age of 21, soon after she became ill with the Flu Virus and shortly after passed away under his supervision. Dr. William explained from that traumatic event, he felt lost and begun to plan his next endeavor in life. He soon moved to Japan with a total of $500, which I was floored by, it kind of may be think about the story“ The Alchemist” and how society will support and conform into whatever personal goals you want to achieve.
Dr. William concluded with a statement that stuck with me throughout the session, he stated that “ Religion is like an emergency room” and we as humans only rely on religion and the higher source when we are in need, and not only a daily basis.That statement for me fits well with societal issues as we look at it today.
To listen and learn about how different religions are practiced and each one’s personal journey was very interesting, and allowed to expand my spiritual knowledge about one’s culture.
Cardinal John Onieyekan, the Archbishop of Abuja, Nigeria also had an interesting journey himself. Being born in to a family of diverse religion and explaining that it did not affect the sense of unity as a whole, allowed me to understand how his community valued the importance of family. Cardinal John explained his upbringing in the faith community, and how his parents were very strict on the practice. They would awake daily at 5am for prayer and attend mass daily for extra prayer.
I sensed an overall passion from each speaker for his or her personal spiritual movement and awakening.
Finally the last keynote speaker for the session was Christi Brown, who describes the importance of meditation and contemplation with her Sacred Journey. The focus on family inspiring the young and enhancing the importance of Culture diversity concluded her brief journey. As I pondered on her journey it made me think about the importance of finding time for you and experiencing life without the variables of the outside world.
Sacred World 2pm-4pm (Secular and Sacred)
The second session for me was a little tough for me to stay focused after completing a much needed lunch, TGIF that was, but I digress and will speak of my experience with this session.
Issues of discussion during this session focused on the climate change, along with how will our leaders attack and solve these global issues of importance.
Pertaining to climate change: Our people of faith must own responsibility, and take care what they can only control.Although this matter is a global issue, it can not be equally distributed amongst our citizens.
Another key point that was mentioned was s simple but powerful phrase that “Religion Role “ is to remind us that God is God and Man is Man, and individuals must be sustainable and be recipients of development.
Pros of the event:Friendly atmosphere, informative information, comfortable stetting, enjoyed how they used technology to incorporate other individuals who could not attend the session physically.
Cons: Although the event was diverse in terms of cultures, but I found it not diverse from an African-American standpoint, I would love to connect with that community as it relates to inviting them out next year.
Felt as though some of the guest speakers were a little long winded, I would also love to had seen some music or creative arts incorporate just to keep the momentum for some of the younger individuals in attendance.
Overall it was a great event and look forward to engaging my community next year.