Faithful Neighbours is a diocesan initiative helping Christians to interact with confidence as they meet people of different faiths - showing respect and hospitality whilst witnessing to our distinctive beliefs. According to the 2011 Census, there are over 300,000 people across our diocese following different faiths. Many of us know neighbours, colleagues and friends from a different religious community, and issues of religion are prominent in the media, so Faithful Neighbours is for every church.
Faithful Neighbours is part of Presence and Engagement - a national Church of England initiative, open to all denominations, supporting churches in their Ministry and Mission in a world of many faiths. Bishop Tony Robinson chairs the National Presence & Engagement Task Force.
Faithful Neighbours aims to:
- Inspire Engagement - encouraging more Christians to get involved
- Facilitate Safe Spaces - helping people to discuss difficult issues
- Transform Communities - through prayer and practical action for the common good.
What we do
Presence and Engagement training for clergy which consist of three parts:
1. Area Visit (half a day) - a visit to a project or church in an area or religious diversity to meet with people of (a) different faith(s) and with local clergy.
2. Core Day (full day with lunch provided) - exploring some of the theology of presence and engagement and what this means for clergy and their context.
3. Thematic Options (half a day) - a variety of workshops for you to choose from as below.
For information about upcoming training please contact jenny.ramsden [at] leeds.anglican.org
Faithful Neighbours workshops open to all. These cover a range of themes such as gender issues in interfaith work; how to engage with other religions; tools for sharing faith; running events or services which include people of other faiths.
A Clash of Cultures? Choreographing Church and Civic Events to engage and include different faiths and cultures – with the UK Centre for Events Management, Monday 12th November, Leeds
Why should we be Present and Engaged? – with Bishop Toby, Wednesday 21st November, Leeds
Engaging with New Religious Movements – with Anne Richards, the Church of England’s National Adviser for Mission Theology, New Religious Movements and Alternative Spiritualities, Thursday 13th December, Leeds
Freemasonry and the Church of England - with Anne Richards, the Church of England’s National Adviser for Mission Theology, New Religious Movements and Alternative Spiritualities, Thursday 13th December, Leeds
Faithful Neighbours will work across the diocese through Local Hubs in each Episcopal Area, so that our work focuses on the particular needs of our different churches and communities.
Near Neighbours working through the Church Urban Fund is a close partner with Faithful Neighbours encouraging people of different faiths and none to understand each other better and work together on initiatives that improve their local neighbourhood.
There are links to resources, including books, videos and information sheets on the Digital Learning Platform under ‘Social Engagement’.
Find out more on the Faithful Neighbours' website.