The Interfaith Coalition of Washington County Maryland was formed by the Washington County Council of Churches (now HARC) in February 2002 with representatives from Jewish, Muslim, and Christian faiths to provide a forum for interfaith dialogue in our community following the tragic events of September 11, 2001. Persons from Baha’i and Buddhist traditions as well as other religious and humanist communities participate today. We see our coalition as an outreach of the Hagerstown Area Religious Council.
Mission Statement of the Interfaith Coalition
The Interfaith Coalition of Washington County exists to bring people of different beliefs together to promote peace, respect, and compassion in our local community. Through dialogue and public presence, we welcome each person’s unique spiritual perspective, strive to learn more about each other, and seek to honor the diversity of our various traditions. (Revised November 9, 2011)
The Interfaith Planning Team, which envisions, coordinates, and carries out events, meets regularly through the year. Persons interested in interfaith dialogue are encouraged to attend or share their ideas with the planning team. Contact Ed Poling, Coordinator, at 301-766-9005 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Church of the Wild ~ Two Rivers is an emerging community, meeting in the midst of and sharing with the abundant life all around us. Our intent is to deepen our connection to the Sacred by being more open, present and available in each moment. We learn from the earth and trees, the skies and water, and all living beings in the web of the natural world. Located in an area where the winding Shenandoah meets the majestic Potomac River, we are nurtured in silence, beauty, and connection.
We gather monthly in nature in times of contemplative practice, sharing our voices in spoken word and song, and in silent walks in nature. We are ecumenical, open to all or no faith traditions. We hope you will join us as we come home to our truest selves in the family of all Creation.
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/churchofthewild2rivers/
Statement of Peace— In light of the recent escalation in fear and hostility toward people of other religious traditions, the Interfaith Coalition and the Hagerstown Area Religious Council have issued a joint, public statement that encourages persons of faith in our community to use “language that promotes respect and civility and discourages language that demeans others’ beliefs or incites violence.” We invite all the religious leaders in our community to sign the statement to show our unity and desire to live together peacefully. Follow this link to download the Statement of Peace.
Yard Signs: “No matter where you are from, we are glad you’re our neighbor.” Hagerstown Area Religious Council has 18” x 24” yard signs available to show your support for diversity. The words are displayed also in Spanish and Arabic. Cost is $15. Purchase a sign online or contact HARC at 301-842-4272.
- A Celebration of Light, Dec. 22 11 a.m. Honoring the diversity of the Season, this candle-lighting service includes thoughts on the Winter Solstice, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and Advent. Presented by Unity of Hagerstown at St. Mark’s Episcopal, 18313 Lappans Rd., Boonsboro MD
- Church of the Wild ~ Two Rivers Jan 5, 3 p.m. – Drum circle begins 2:30 pm
As we move into a new year, we are called to awareness of the beyond-human voices of the living world. At this gathering, we’ll engage in The Council of All Beings, a communal ritual in which participants speak on behalf of another life-form. This practice helps us acknowledge and give voice to the suffering of our world even as it helps us to experience the beauty and power of our interconnectedness with all life. After our 30-minute silent walk in the living world,we will close with conversation, snacks, and fellowship. For details and free registration, see our event page.
- Seeker’s Circle Book Club meets six times a year at the Washington County Free Library in downtown Hagerstown, 7:00 pm Study Room 333, reading and discussing books that describe the religious life and traditions of several of the world’s religions and current issues in interfaith dialogue. Inquiries to Gwen Skrabak, 301-797-1603 or Kathleen O’Connell, email@example.com / 301-739-3250 ext. 166. Books can be purchased online or, if available, borrowed from the library. Download a flyer.
- Thursday, Jan. 16: Made for Happiness
- Thursday, Mar. 19: Killers of the Flower Moon
- Thursday, May 21: Ninety-nine Stories of God
- Winter Interfaith Retreat Feb. 1, 8:30 am – 4 pm: The Universal Language of Dance A day away to heal, dance, laugh, reconnect with the Divine, through different dance and faith traditions. Learn easy movements, designed for all different styles, abilities, levels, body types, and ages. Reflect and journal on the language of dance and see films from the Dance4Peace project, highlighting dancers from around the world. Enjoy the opportunity to get to know friends from different faiths. Registration $40 Continental Breakfast and Lunch included. To register, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 240-409-5940 Held at Shepherd’s Spring 16869 Taylors Landing Road • Sharpsburg, Maryland 21782-0369 Retreat Leader- Candice Tritch, Founder and Director of Dance Alchemy-Baltimore, home of the Dance4Peace Projects. For more information download a flyer here.
- Next Planning Meeting: Contact Ed Poling for time and location.
Open or download Upcoming Events document
Officers for 2018-2019
Coordinator – Ed Poling
Vice Coordinator – Valerie Wills
Secretary – Carol Haggerty
Treasurer – Salih Yumlu
Publicity – Sandy Boyer
For more information, contact: Ed Poling (301)766-9005, email@example.com
Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/125909250824944/