Blears announces new inter-faith week

Communities Secretary Hazel Blears has announced plans for England’s first ever inter-faith week.

‘Inter Faith Week’ will take place from 15 to 21 November to strengthen inter-faith relations and celebrate the contribution of faith groups to society.

"People from different faiths are working at the heart of their communities to help disadvantaged people, including those whose jobs, homes or businesses may be at risk during these challenging economic times,” said Ms Blears.

“It's arguably more important than ever that people of different faiths and beliefs come together and are able to explore what they have in common.

“I hope that 'Inter Faith Week' will help to strengthen these relationships and build stronger bonds of understanding and cooperation.”

Local authorities, schools and other community groups are being encouraged to take part by hosting inter-faith events such as exchange visits between churches and mosques, inter-faith football matches or ‘faith trails’ to different places of worship.

The week is being facilitated by the Inter Faith Network for the UK and the Department for Communities and Local Government.

The Inter Faith Network’s co-chairs, Bishop of Southwark the Rt Rev Tom Butler and Dr Nawal Prinja, said: "We welcome this important opportunity to increase understanding about and between people of different faiths."