DeWitt: InterFaith Works

On Jan. 24, LeMoyne College hosted a special ceremony. A declaration given by the InterReligious Council of Central New York specified a new name: InterFaith Works.

The name change occurred in response to the growing diversity of faith communities in Central New York.

Its new mission is "to affirm the dignity of each person and faith community and to create relationships and understanding through education, service and dialogue," according to a recent press release.

Goals of the organization are to connect with more faith communities such as Mormons, Christian Scientists and Native Americans. It would also like to deepen its relations with Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Bah'ais and Sikhs.

"With a more inclusive name and mission, we can better communicate and achieve our goals," said Dr. Jim Wiggins, executive director, in a press release. "The reality is that for the past 20 years, Central New York has experienced great growth of diversity in faith and spiritual communities, and we hope that our new name and mission convey our welcome to each one of those communities."

During the conference, Wiggins described the new logo, an open circle, as intentional.

"You notice it has a kind of openness at one part -- it's not totally closed. That's intentional and meant as an invitation for those who have not yet come to our table," Wiggins said. It represents inclusiveness and openness, he said.

"InterFaith Works is a great benefit to Central New York," stated Dr. Thomas Wolfe, president of InterFaith Works, in a press release. "And we encourage people of all faiths to get involved and help us carry out our mission to make our community a better place."

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