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Jewish-Hindu-Muslim-Buddhist leaders address Catholic youth rally of northern Nevada

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Jewish rabbi Myra Soifer, Hindu leader Rajan Zed, Muslim imam Abdulrahim Barghouthi, Buddhist priest William S. Bartlett, Catholic pastor Father Charles T. Durante, with some of the participants at Catholic Youth Rally.

In a remarkable interfaith gesture, Sixth Annual Catholic Diocesan Youth Rally held on March five in Reno, involving Catholic teenagers from all over northern Nevada, heard from area Muslim-Hindu-Buddhist-Jewish leaders.

Catholic teenagers listened intently in the chapel of Bishop Manogue Catholic High School to Muslim imam Abdulrahim Barghouthi, Hindu leader Rajan Zed, Buddhist priest William S. Bartlett, and Jewish rabbi Myra Soifer, explaining the tenets of their respective faiths, highlighting similarities. It ended with recitation of Gayatri Mantra (most sacred mantra of Hinduism from the oldest existing scripture of mankind, Rig-Veda) by Zed.

Father Charles T. Durante, Pastor of Saint Teresa of Avila Catholic Community of Carson City, who coordinated the interfaith event, said that in order to truly live in peace and harmony; we must strive to understand others. Randolph R. Calvo is the Bishop of Diocese of Reno, while Monique Jacobs is its Director of Youth Ministry.

Few hundred Catholic youth participated in this Rally, where workshops were held on “What’s Your Story? Why Does it Matter?”, “Do you have a 4G Connection to God?”, “Gang Prevention”, “Try to make three people smile today…including yourself”, etc. Musician Jesse Manibusan was the keynote speaker of the Rally, which also included music, skits, mass, etc.

Rajan Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, has congratulated the Catholic Diocese efforts of exposing their youth to other religions. “Religion is a complex component of human life. Dialogue helps us to see interconnections and interdependencies between religions and even similarities in doctrines,” Zed adds.

Catholic Diocese of Reno, established in 1931, covers 70,852 square miles spread in 11 Nevada counties in addition to Carson City. Before 1840, this area was under the Diocese of Sonora in Mexico, when it came under the jurisdiction of Bishop Moreno of California.

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