Interfaith Event Brings San Francisco Area Faiths Together
The Interfaith Council of Greater Rancho Santa Margarita in California participated in the annual “Let Us Sing Thanksgiving” event at San Francisco Solano Catholic Church on Sunday, November 11. As in previous years, each faith group presented a very short sermon and a musical number.
The event started with all faiths in the audience singing “America the Beautiful,” followed by a sermon by the Reverend John Embree of Community Lutheran Church and a solo by a young Lutheran, Jason Leland. The St. John’s Middle School Choir, Light of Unity Singers, LDS Santa Margarita Children’s Choir, and San Francisco Children’s Choir were all part of the children’s music.
“When we told the parents that the children had this opportunity to sing at this interfaith event, they were really excited,” said Margie Dayley, director of the LDS children’s choir. “The children loved singing the melody of America’s patriotic hymns.”
In his sermon, the Reverend Canon John Taylor, Vicar of St. John’s Episcopal Church, spoke about the importance of Americans uniting together, even though they might not agree on the results of the recent election. “That is what the interfaith council is all about,” he said.
“We want to celebrate our similarities and differences while promoting harmony and unity and fostering greater understandings between faiths,” said Dave Daly, Rancho Santa Margarita California Stake’s interfaith director.
As in previous years, the end of the program included singing “Let There Be Peace on Earth,” but this year the combined children’s choirs from all faiths sang the first verse followed by the entire audience joining them on the second verse. Deacon Carol Swanson of San Francisco Solano Catholic Church said, “Bringing the children seemed to really grow our audience. I don’t think we have ever had such a large crowd.”