CMWRC Outreach and Interfaith Activities
Understanding and educating about how that which exists (divinity) is described and worshipped in Hindu religion, engaging with groups willing to discuss their religion or point of view openly, and promoting community relationships, leading to respect for all is the goal of Chinmaya Mission Washington Regional Center’s (CMWRC) outreach and interfaith efforts.
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Chinmaya Mission nationwide has partnered with Hindu American Foundation in the Dharma Ambassador program. This program provides training for presenting Hindu religion authentically, within the bounds of First Amendment, and in a non-denominational manner.
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- January 2018: Jemicy School, Owings Mill (English Literature with a unit on Ancient Indian texts)
- November 2017: South Lakes High School, Fairfax (World 1 and IB World Religions class)
- October 2017: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Annadale Virginia Stake (Seminary class)
- October 2017: Heritage High School, Leesburg (World Religions class)
- September 2017: Frederick community college (World Religions class)
- July 2017: Frederick community college (World Religions class)
- June 2017: Gesher Jewish day school (7th and 8th-grade Comparative Religions class)
- March 2017: Loyola College (World Religions class)
United Hindu Jain temples (UHJT) is a coalition of a large number of Hindu and Jain temples in the DC metro area. It organizes Diwali Mela annually.CMWRC is an active participant in the coalition.
CMWRC is a member of Interfaith Conference of Metropolitan Washington (IFC) through its membership in UHJT.
WIROC at IFC is a regional initiative designed to complement local initiatives for providing rapid-response to hate crimes and to avoid such crimes in the future through educational efforts aimed at reducing religious ignorance. CMWRC is among the founding members of this initiative.
Montgomery County Public School system has a Faith committee working group (FCWG). Education subcommittee of FCWG has members from several faiths working to enhance quality of religious education, assure respect for all religious traditions and secure an environment free of discrimination, bullying and harassment. Hindu representative on this committee is a member of CMWRC.
Members of CMWRC serve on the Howard County Board of Education Elementary Social Studies Advisory Board whose scope includes both educational reforms and anti-bullying initiatives.
Howard and Montgomery county school board hearings had participation from several Hindu members of the region, including CMWRC members, advocating for declaring Diwali festival a holiday. These efforts gave desired result in Howard County.
Teacher training conducted in DC metro area, including at Chinmayam, led to the nation’s first district level religious literacy course for educators. Quote from Chritopher E. Murray Jr, NBCT, Walter Johnson High School “Early in my career teaching about Hinduism in Montgomery County Public Schools I felt lost and confused with the many narratives I found in textbooks and online. Luckily I found that the county has a robust and supportive Hindu community who opened their doors and shared their beliefs, customs, and common misconceptions. Over the past five years these “Dharma Ambassadors” from the Chinmayam Mission have led close to a dozen trainings for teachers and counselors in MCPS. Their hospitality and partnership with the Sikh community (Sikh Kid 2 Kid) planted the seed for what would become the nation’s first district level religious literacy course for educators. The Chinmayam Mission represents the very best in interfaith collaboration for the promotion of a pluralistic society. Each time a new core of educators gets the opportunity to learn about the rich and diverse community of Hindus you see misconceptions melt away and a truer representation of the world’s 3rd largest religion gained.”
Most recent training conducted at Chinmaya Mission Washington Regional Center in the last one year were on October 26,2017 and Feb 15, 2018 [picture].
- Multicultural Dialogues on Bias[1,2,3]
- Hindu-Catholic Dialogue
- Montgomery Unity Walk 2017 [pictures]
- WIROC coverage in Washington Post
- Interracial/interfaith Dialogue on Racism: Seeing the Divine in each other (Three part series 1, 2, 3)
- Montgomery county interfaith women’s book club visit to Silver Spring center of Chinmaya Mission [picture 1,picture 2]
- Stand-up for Montgomery way
- National Cathedral Interfaith service of prayer and remembrance
- Panel Discussion
- The Witness of Religion in an Age of Fear
- CCS Conference (“Psychotherapy and Religion”) Oct 31 – Panelist
- Interfaith panel for Dialogue and Cooperation, Lotus Buddhist temple