Interfaith breakfast brings different religions together

By Adam Porter and By Adam Porter

Not In Our Town (NIOT) and local religious leaders celebrated religious diversity and tolerance, with a bit of food on the side, at their “Interfaith Breakfast” Wednesday.

Meeting at Wood County’s Fairgrounds, participants were able to listen to people of different faiths speak while also enjoying the provided breakfast.

“The Interfaith Breakfast is an annual event hosted by NIOT; the initiative of this event is the partnership with the city and University and opportunity for students, faculty, staff alumni, community members and more to attend and celebrate for diversity and inclusion and learn about the differences in faith,” Alex Solis, Marketing and Development Coordinator of the President’s office, said. “We invited a slate of speakers from different religions: from Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Judaism and Native American.”

This year, there was a more diverse amount of speakers than there had been previous years.

“Great thing about this list is that in the years past, we had pastors, ministers and so forth. This year, we changed the focus, and we reinvented and intentionally changed to those who practice religion and myth busting the various faiths of their religion,” Solis said. “It is a challenging time nationally, with everything going on across the country; events like this serve as a great reminder for us to celebrate differences.”

Solis mentioned the local speakers did a great job, and said that Mayor Edwards and President Mazey did a good job recognizing how events like the breakfast are important and can make an impact in the community.

Solis is personally proud and relates to students in the crowd. He mentioned this was a great opportunity to share viewpoints and give an informal dialogue about the events going on and making this an impact at the University.

“NIOT and the Interfaith Breakfast wouldn’t be successful today if it wasn’t [for] the support of the city and University,” Solis said.

Rev. Gary Saunders, Co-Chair of NIOT and Co-Pastor of BG’s First Presbyterian Church said it the best according to Solis, “Diversity is a gift.”