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Community & Clubs: Interfaith Council celebrates 'Bridge Builders'

May 10, 2011|By Jim de Boom

As part of its Open Faiths-Open Doors Week, the Newport-Mesa-Irvine Interfaith Council honored seven individuals, a congregation and two groups with "Bridge Builder Awards" for their leadership in promoting interfaith dialogue and understanding, according to a news release from the council.

Among the honorees at the dinner were Eman Bermani of the Islamic Educational Center of Orange County for promoting a better and peaceful understating of Islam amongst the interfaith community; Jean Forbath, founder of Share Our Selves; Sande Hart, founder of Spiritual and Religious Alliance for Hope, an organization that brings women of all faiths together; Nancy Jenks, executive director of UCI Interfaith, which has been a safe harbor for students, staff and faculty to peacefully congregate and practice their faith; Dennis Short, leader of the Interfaith Hunger Walk, which has raised more than $427,689 in the past 20 years to feed the hungry; Beth Syverson, of the Orange Coast Unitarian Universalist Church, who founded the Interfaith Children's Choir; and Tom Thorkelson, with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, who is the co-founder of the Orange County Interfaith Network.

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The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Newport Beach Stake, was recognized for its 10-year sponsorship of Hearts and Hands and day of hands on interfaith service to the community. The Olive Tree Initiative, a student group at UC Irvine, was honored for being an important hub for bridge-building, dialogue and cooperation between students and student groups. Hoag Hospital's Community Health Parish Nurse also was honored.

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Hall of Fame luncheon

The third annual Daily Pilot Community and Clubs Hall of Fame luncheon will be held June 17 at the Newport Beach American Legion Post 291 to honor members of service clubs, community organizations and congregations for their service to youth, our communities and their respective organizations.

If you belong to a service club, community organization or a religious congregation involved in community service or service to the community's youth, you can secure a nomination form by contacting Lane Calvert at (714) 546-8558x181 or via e-mail at lanec@oclfl.org, or from Jim de Boom at (949) 689-4443 or jdeboom@aol.com. Nominations are due by June 6.

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