Governor Wes Moore and Lieutenant Governor Aruna Miller launched the Governor’s Council on Interfaith Outreach with an inaugural meeting with faith leaders across Maryland in June.
Chaired by Miller, the group will convene faith leaders for shared discussion on issues facing their communities and develop action items Maryland can take on to foster religious tolerance across faiths, and root out faith-based hatred, violence and persecution.
“Growing up in an interfaith household taught me that at its core, faith is about empathy, respect, and promoting a more equitable world,” Miller said. “I am honored to chair the Council on Interfaith Outreach to create space at the highest level of state government to foster shared discussion between faith groups. There is so much more that unites us than divides us, and by coming together in unity, we can create a more inclusive, compassionate and understanding Maryland.”
Moore agreed with the sentiment.
“We come from many different backgrounds, but all of our faiths teach us shared values to care for others, support our children and love one another,” Moore said. “The council will put those values into practice, and build strategies to foster religious tolerance across faiths, and end the cycle of faith-based hatred, violence and persecution in the state of Maryland.”
The group will meet every other month to further discussion and develop strategies the state can take to foster increased religious respect across faiths.
Actions the group will explore include:
Fostering Dialogue and Understanding: Encourage regular interfaith dialogues, open conversations, and discussions to promote understanding, empathy and respect among religious communities, which can help break down barriers and build bridges of understanding.
Collaborating on Community Service Projects: Engage in joint community service initiatives such as food drives, homeless shelters, environmental initiatives, or disaster relief efforts.
Organizing Interfaith Celebrations and Events: Plan and host interfaith celebrations that showcase the richness and diversity of religious traditions within the community.
Advocating for Interfaith Collaboration at Policy Levels: Actively engage with local, regional and national policymakers to advocate for inclusive policies that respect and accommodate the religious rights and freedoms of all individuals.
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