NewsLocal News


Denver-based faith leaders come together for interfaith service promoting unity

Posted at 10:43 PM, Jan 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-08 01:16:10-05

DENVER -- People across the country are continuing to process the images captured during the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday.

As the country looks for solutions and answers on how to heal, faith leaders in Denver are looking for solutions too.

Joe Black is the Senior Rabbi at Temple Emanuel in the Cherry Creek community. He said after watching Wednesday's attack on the U.S. Capitol, he immediately started organizing an interfaith service with the Temple Emanuel's faith partners.

"I felt lost, I felt angry, I felt sad and I felt afraid," said Rabbi Joe Black. "When I'm feeling those emotions, one of the most important things we can have is a sense of community."

The interfaith service was streamed online with each faith leader delivering a message from his or her respective home.

Rabbi Black was one of ten people who shared either a prayer, hymn or song from a faith pool that included: Christianity, Islam, Judaism and Buddhism.

Rabbi Black called Wednesday's riot an attack on the country's democracy, and he urged others to do the same.

"We honor our shared common values that make this nation great. We say to those who would try to impose their beliefs on us as a nation through violence and through intimidation and through lies - that will not work," Rabbi Black said.

He added that the insurrection amplified and reinforced fears faced by many.

"We as Jews have felt threatened, absolutely have felt threatened. We've increased our security, we've had to do many things to acknowledge the reality of the world in which we are living," he said.

Reverend Canaan Harris of Central Christian Church said he looks to his own congregation as an example of how the country can heal.

"We're what you call a purple congregation, which means we have red and blue, we have people of all political strips - Democrats and Republicans.We try to see how we can respect each other and meet each other at the table."

Harris told Denver7 the coalition of faith groups initially began in the late 1800s with a partnership between Temple Emanuel and Central Christian Church.