Interfaith Forgiveness Forum To Be Held At Temple Beth-El


ForgivenessJewish, Christian, Muslim and Buddhist leaders will gather at Temple Beth-El of Great Neck on Sunday, Nov. 13, from 2 to 6 p.m. for an interfaith forum on forgiveness. The Art of Forgiveness: An Interfaith Forum will journey into the faith of forgiveness and the agony of anger, led by extraordinary clergy, witness-survivors and moderator Robert Silverman of the American Jewish Committee (AJC).

Rabbi Shlomo Riskin, a leading Modern Orthodox Rabbi and founder of Lincoln Square Synagogue currently living in Israel, Rev. Dr. Patrick G. Duggan of the Congregational Church of South Hempstead and Mufti Mohammed Farhan, PhD of the Islamic Center of Long Island, will come together with individuals from spiritual communities who have been impacted by senseless tragedy to examine forgiveness, a skill they deem necessary for achieving harmony and peace in our homes and local and global communities.

Through interfaith group discussions, participants will address what their community says about forgiveness and whether anything is possible without it. The forum will conclude with an interfaith musical celebration featuring Cantor Vladimir Lapin of Temple Beth-El of Great Neck and Nigel Gretton of St. John’s University.

Discussions will be facilitated by religious leaders and witness-survivors, including Kadiatou Diallo, mother of Amadou Diallo, a victim of a police shooting in 1999, and Blondelle Gadsen, sister of Myra Thompson, a victim of the 2015 Charleston church shooting. Great Neck resident Farrangiss Sedaghat-Pour, who was exiled in her youth from her homeland of Iran, will also speak. The forum was inspired by the extraordinary acts of forgiveness by the relatives of the victims in the aftermath of the 2015 shooting at Mother Emanuel Church in Charleston, SC. Temple Beth-El’s Senior Rabbis Meir and Tara Feldman have established a strong connection with the Charleston witness-survivors, which gave rise to the realization that forgiveness is the essence to understanding our differences and building bridges across diverse communities.

At the forum, attendees will be asked to consider their own areas of forgiveness and will work to embark on their own personal forgiveness journeys.

The event is free and will be held at 5 Old Mill Rd. in Great Neck. To preregister or for more information, visit

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