In a remarkable interfaith gesture; Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist and Jewish religious leaders came together in Reno, Nev., on August 7 to provide a warm welcome to new Methodist and Presbyterian pastors and a Jewish rabbi.
According to religious statesman Rajan Zed, organizer of the event, this multi-faith reception was held to welcome Reno First United Methodist Church Pastor Kristen A. Marshall, Temple Sinai Reno Rabbi Ethan Bair and Spanish Springs Presbyterian Church Sparks Pastor Howard R. Dotson to the area, who recently stepped into their respective positions.
Stressing the need for interfaith dialogue, Rajan Zed points out that we are all looking for the truth and in our shared quest for the truth; we can learn from one another and thus come closer to the truth.
Sparks Mayor Geno R. Martini presided over the event. Besides Zed and Martini, others who addressed this multi-faith gathering included Senior Pastor of Sparks Summit Christian Church Stephen B. Bond, Dr. Rafik I. Beekun of Northern Nevada Muslim Community, Rita Sloan of Roman Catholic Diocese of Reno, Matthew Fisher from Reno Buddhist Center, Temple Bat Yam South Lake Tahoe Rabbi Evon J. Yakar, Sharla S. Hales of Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Head Bishop of International Community of Christ Gene Savoy Junior and Washoe County School District Chief Communications Officer Irene Payne.
St. Anthony Greek Orthodox Church Presiding Priest Stephen R. Karcher provided the invocation while Toni de Salvo of Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd lead “Amazing Grace” and well-known musician Jim Eaglesmith gave a multi-language interfaith number in which the audience also joined in. Representatives from the offices of US Senator Harry Reid, US Senator Dean Heller and US Congressman Mark Amodei presented testimonials to the new clergy.