DC Young Adult Faith Leaders Summit
On February 9, 2013, a diverse group of emerging leaders from religious communities throughout the Washington DC area gathered for the first-ever DC Young Adult Faith Leaders Summit. The event was organized by Faith in Action DC and hosted by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Friendship Heights/Chevy Chase. Representatives from dozens of communities, organizations, and institutions attended the DCYAFLS, including Bahá’í, Buddhist, Catholic, Hindu, Humanist, Jewish, Latter-Day Saints, Muslim, Protestant, Sikh, Zoroastrian, as well as participants with no religious affiliation or multiple affiliations.
At the Summit, the young leaders (clergy, activists, directors of programs, etc) talked about their faith traditions, shared experiences mobilizing their peers for service and social justice, and strategized about how they could more effectively work together across faith lines.
The summit’s lead organizer, FIADC’s Jack Gordon, opened the summit with some background about his own faith journey, the inspiration behind the multimedia project Faith in Action DC, and how that ultimately led to the coordination of this summit.
Here is a selection of Jack Gordon’s introduction to the summit.
DC’s Mayor Vincent Gray warmly accepted to personally visit and address our gathering. In a packed meeting room, Mayor Gray spoke of the rapidly changing demographics of the city and how it is vital to embrace increasing, inevitable multiculturalism. At the same time, the mayor urged the assembled emerging leaders to ensure their communities continue providing a complement of direct services and sustainable poverty-reduction programs for vulnerable populations that are being pushed to the margins.
Here are some selections from Mayor Gray’s talk.
For more about the DCYAFLS, please read Jack’s article for The Huffington Post and our report from the summit, including letters of support from key DC leaders.