Peace Chanukah offered as interfaith celebration in Taos, New Mexico

Bringing together speakers from all faith traditions to reflect on peace in this season, Peace Chanukah is the only interfaith ceremony of its kind in Taos. It has become a favorite holiday gathering for many Taoseños. All are welcome to participate in the event which includes the lighting of Chanukah candles, storytelling and song.

This year, Peace Chanukah takes place on Wednesday (Dec. 17), on the second night of Chanukah for 2014. The program begins at 5:30 p.m. and ends at 7 p.m. There is no cost to attend, and everyone is welcome. Those who are able are encouraged to bring nonperishable food items to the event as part of a collection for The Shared Table and the Taos Coalition to End Homelessness. St. James Church is located at 208 Camino de Santiago.

“The purpose of Peace Chanukah is to bring people from all walks of life, all faith traditions (or none), and all our various racial/ethnic/cultural groups together to sing songs and give prayers for peace and good will,” said organizer Bette Myerson. “Especially at this time of year it’s important to be joined together as one human family. Religion has been the pretext for too many divisions (including wars) over history. We want to reverse that trend.”

Speakers at this year’s gathering include Pastor Steve Wiard (El Pueblito United Methodist Church), Sean Murphy (Zen Buddhist), Mya Coursey (Unitarian Congregation of Taos), Rev. Susan Varon (interfaith minister – Unity of Taos), Fr. Mike Olsen (St James Episcopal Church), Janet Burstein (Hindu), Heyam Khweis (Muslim) and Diana Rico, who will speak on Catholic perspectives on peace and justice.


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