More than 2,000 people of various faiths attended an interfaith musical event which was held in the Tabernacle on Temple Square on Sunday, March 19.
This night of unity and celebration included musical performances, dances and scriptural readings from 12 Utah faith traditions.
Prayers during the Sacred Music Evening were offered by local Jewish, Muslim and Sikh leaders. Carole Mikita of KSL Television conducted the program. Elder Michael H. Bourne, an Area Seventy, welcomed guests to the event on behalf of the Church. Calling the event “diverse, harmonious and peaceful,” Elder Bourne said it was a “wonderful, unified gathering of many faiths represented throughout the valley.”
The Salt Lake Interfaith Roundtable organized the event, which has been held annually for the past 15 years. The event began as a prayerful reflection for religious leaders and others preparing to welcome the world to Salt Lake City for the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. “We were thrilled to welcome and support the interfaith council’s annual meeting and host it in the Tabernacle,” said Elder Bourne.
Imam Muhammad Shoayb Mehtar, a local Muslim leader from the Khadeeja Mosque, spoke about the need to stand up for religious liberty by protecting those who are the most vulnerable in society. He gave the example of three Utah women who stepped up to help a Muslim woman who was being harassed by a man for wearing a hijab.
“The concert is a celebration of all faiths and humankind,” said Josie Stone, chair of the Salt Lake Interfaith Roundtable. “It’s a way for us to celebrate our commonalities amidst the diversity of how and what we believe.”
The Salt Lake Interfaith Roundtable organization’s mission is to create a community “where people of diverse faiths, cultures and belief systems enjoy mutual respect, understanding, appreciation, acceptance, harmony and love.”