HAS there ever been a more important time in world history than for a celebration of the United Nations World Interfaith Harmony Week?
As world events full of intolerance, greed and instability continue to dominate the headlines, its refreshing to know at least in Ballarat efforts are being continually made to make the world a better place.
A series of events have been planned to celebrate World Interfaith Harmony week which will be celebrated in the first week of February.
Beginning with a flag raising ceremony on February 1 at St Peter's Anglican Church, the week will open with a welcome to country followed by guest speakers.
Other major events throughout the week include the Thai Buddhist community offering Morning Ritual at the Buddhist Temple on February 2.
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This event will offer visitors an introduction to Buddhist history, chanting of morning suttas led by the monks and a meditation session.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is running a Family History Day.
On February 7, the Sikh community, Virasat-e-Pujab, is offering Path Shri Sukhmani Sahib, a Sikh event to celebrate the week through Path (prayer of peace and joy of mind), Kirtan (devotional singing), an introduction to Sikhism, and Guru Ka Langar (communal dinner).
Chair of the Ballarat Interfaith Network, Margaret Lenan Ellis, said there was no doubt people would relish an opportunity to be with other members of the community after so many events in 2020 were held virtually.
"People really do appreciate getting together face-to-face in social company with one another," Ms Lenan Ellis said.
"I think that helps to illustrate how social relationships are important to people.
"People believe in fostering this kind of message, and we aim to have a flow on effect to the community. That this is a spirit we are sharing."