Parliament of the World’s Religions to Gather in Salt Lake City in 2015

Mary Nelson, executive director of the Parliament of the World’s Religions, right, speaks with Sande Hart, chair for the North America Region of the United Religions Initiative, center, and Arun Gandhi, fifth grandson of Mohandas Gandhi, left, after a press conference announcing Salt Lake City as host of the Parliament of the World’s Religions 2015 Global Interfaith Summit at Salt Palace Convention Center. (Michelle Tessier, Deseret News)
Mary Nelson, executive director of the Parliament of the World’s Religions, right, speaks with Sande Hart, chair for the North America Region of the United Religions Initiative, center, and Arun Gandhi, fifth grandson of Mohandas Gandhi, left, after a press conference announcing Salt Lake City as host of the Parliament of the World’s Religions 2015 Global Interfaith Summit at Salt Palace Convention Center. (Michelle Tessier, Deseret News)

The Beehive State will welcome the world’s largest and most historic interfaith gathering to Salt Lake City in 2015.

This is the first time in 22 years the Parliament of the World’s Religions has voted to hold its conference in the United States.

“America is the home base of the interfaith movement, and it’s about time the Parliament come back home,” Parliament Chair Imam Abdul Malik Mujahid said in an announcement.

Reid Neilson, managing director of the LDS Church’s Historian Department, wrote his doctoral dissertation on the Parliament. Neilson pointed out the significance of the Parliament’s choice of Salt Lake City, the global center for the Church.

“This says the Church is being taken seriously,” Neilson said. “We are a global face and should be included in any major global conversation.”

Salt Lake City will host religious and spiritual leaders from around the globe at the Salt Lake Palace Convention Center Oct. 15–19,  2015.

“The world is no stranger to Salt Lake, and we are no stranger to the world,” said Scott Beck, president and CEO of the Visit Salt Lake company. “Salt Lake has hosted various international gatherings, including the 2002 Olympic Games and Rotary International. We are excited to again welcome a national and international audience to experience what Salt Lake has to offer, both physically and spiritually.”

First held in Chicago in 1893, the Parliament has convened every five years in a major international city since 1993. Its mission is to achieve a just, peaceful and sustainable world through cultivating religious harmony and global engagement.

“Parliament of the World’s Religions is not about uniting to create one religion, but we strive for something that is more achievable, that is, harmony between people of different faiths,” Mujahid said. “The Parliament is the largest summit of interfaith activists around the globe which provides listening, learning and sharing opportunities.”

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SOURCE: Annmarie Moore and Kayci Treu 
The Digital Universe

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