“Uprooted: Compassion After Displacement”
Convened in observance of Interfaith Harmony Week, the Interfaith Harmony Week Dialogue and Prayer Ceremony (IHWDPC) hosted by the Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation is a continuation of a yearly tradition to bring together religious and spiritual leaders. The main goal is to reflect on the year’s emergent challenges and share how different faith traditions are responding at a local level in New York City to key challenges faced by the global community. It is through the lens of local action, for global impact, that over the years, this convening has unpacked issues from cultivating wellness amidst COVID-19 to the mental health epidemic.
Accelerating from crisis in Ukraine, there has been a rise in displacement around the world. Over 100,000 people among the millions who fled from Ukraine have been admitted into the United States within the first five months of the war. Paired alongside other crises and conflicts around the world, like in Myanmar and the Democratic Republic of Congo, the need for compassionate care and a sustained response for the resettlement of those who are seeking refuge is on the rise. In order to have a holistic and successful integration into the communities for those who are experiencing displacement, faith and spiritual leaders play a unique role, bringing alongside their actions of care and a framework of values that inspire a greater sense of humanity and compassion.
The 2023 iteration of the IHWDPC marks the return to in-person gathering at the Tzu Chi Center for Compassionate Relief in New York City, and will feature a panel discussion whereby speakers will reflect on how faith and spiritual communities are working with displaced populations to help them find a new sense of home, followed by a brunch discussion with all invited guests, and finished off with a prayer session, where religious leaders will offer prayers from their traditions that shine a light of hope for those who have become uprooted and displaced, whose lives are filled with uncertainty and change. This event will be livestreamed and is available to watch here.