ATLANTA INTERFAITH LEADERS FELLOWSHIP – A place for dialog and fellowship!
In late 2008, the Atlanta InterFaith Leaders Fellowship (the AILF) was formed to provide a gathering place where persons engaged in interfaith work can share ideas and experiences for the purposes of mutual support and inspiration.
2011 marks the third year of programming to achieve that goal. Membership and participation in AILF events is open to all who are interested in sharing in interfaith work.
That interfaith dialog might either be through community programs which they lead or in which they participate. Alternatively, they may be models of interfaith relationship building through their personal contact with friends and neighbors.
The AILF believes that creation of interfaith understanding and cooperation is accomplished best through personal contact and conversation. The only requirement for participation is a willingness to engage in conversation that is respectful of the views of others. This also means refraining from efforts to proselytize others to any individual’s personal sets of beliefs or religious tradition at AILF events.
Since its founding, the AILF has held four to six events each year for its general membership. These have covered a wide variety of topics. Meetings are open to guests and visitors at any time. Some events have been focused on familiarizing members with specific religious traditions, e.g. Islam and Judaism. Other programs have been directed to developing understanding of shared and varied practices surrounding key rites of passage. One addressed death and grieving. The other one looked at marriage.
Success in interfaith dialog requires specific skills in listening and communicating. The unique experiences of each person deserve to be heard with courtesy. This is particularly the case when we find difficult segments within the sacred texts which are formative for the religious communities. A dialog skills workshop was offered early in 2011 to aid members in developing those skills.
The AILF has no formal organization. A Planning Group with rotating membership is responsible for developing and leading programs throughout the year. Program suggestions from all AILF members are welcomed. To make program suggestions or request information regarding the AILF, please email Bill Voss. To join the AILF, all that is required is an email to the AILF secretary, Bill Voss, at firstname.lastname@example.org. There are no fees or dues for membership.