Toronto Multifaith Iftar to support climate justice

Toronto Multifaith Iftar to support climate justice

Climate Iftar July 5 2015

(June 19, 2015) – A broad-based coalition of Faith communities from across the Greater Toronto Area will gather at the Noor Cultural Centre on Sunday, July 5 for a multifaith climate action Iftar to raise their voices in support of climate justice.

“Coming together as a community to break the Ramadan fast helps us to see that we have each other for support as we strive to renew the sacred balance with the earth,” Lucy Cummings, Executive Director of Faith & the Common Good, told “Especially for those of us living in Canada, ending the overconsumption and ‘throw-away’ mentality that pervades our lives and destroys our environment will require a deep change of heart.”

“Ramadan symbolizes the spiritual practices and communal fellowship that give us the strength to make these changes,” added Cummings.

The extraordinary Iftar gathering is sponsored by Faith & the Common Good, a national interfaith network, and Noor Cultural Centre and supported by a wide spectrum of partners from various Faith communities.

Iftar, the fast breaking meal, will be locally sourced, organic, and vegetarian.

The multifaith event comes at a crucial time for the climate justice movement with the recent release of Pope Francis’s climate change encyclical and the upcoming Pan American Climate Summit.

“In a year that is critical for the climate and on the eve of the Pan American Climate Summit (July 7-9), we wanted to host a multifaith gathering that would showcase to the larger community our shared sacred calling to responsibly steward creation,” said Lucy Cummings. “We also want to celebrate the breadth and diversity of local faith-based actions in response to this calling.”

“We know our work has only just begun, but we want people who attend to leave inspired with a positive message of hope and multifaith unity in support of climate action.”

According to the organizers, the event will highlight the diversity and breadth of Canadian faith and spiritual voices in support of climate justice.

Ontario’s Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, the Hon. Glen Murray will give opening remarks at the event and environmental leaders from various traditions will present local faith-based action programs such as a community-wide water protection initiative led by indigenous spiritual knowledge and a successful community supported agriculture initiative rooted in Jewish social and environmental values.

A photographic slide show, “One Planet: Harnessing Hope”, by Irene Borins Ash will feature diverse Canadian faith groups and their earth care actions.

“At its core, the climate crisis is a spiritual crisis,” said Faith & Common Good’s Lucy Cummings.  “A recent poll in the US reported that over 80% believed that our environmental crisis was a moral issue, but less than 20% had ever heard their faith leaders discuss climate change.”

“We know all faith and spiritual traditions share a sacred calling to care for the earth,” added Cummings.  If we are to effectively respond to this environmental crisis, it is vital that we come together as people of faith to help rejuvenate this shared commitment to love and protect our planet.”

For further information on the Iftar and to register: