2010-09-11

Sep 11

Rev. Terry Jones now says he won't be burning a Quran: "Not today, not ever."
And the sign on his property announcing "International Burn a Koran Day" has come down.

Sighs of relief.

The New York Times has a nice article about Gainesville and how we're responding to having Rev. Jones in our midst.
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/11/us/11gainesville.html?_r=2&hp

Last night I was at a neighboring church, Gainesville's Trinity United Methodist Church, for the "Gathering for Peace, Understanding and Hope" held there. Read about it:
http://www.gainesville.com/article/20100911/ARTICLES/9111004/1118?Title=People-of-all-faiths-join-for-a-display-of-unity
It was marvelously well-attended. Rev. Jones seems to have drawn quite a lot of people into more energetically seeking interfaith harmony.
One indicator: When the leadership of Trinity United Methodist asked its membership for volunteers to help with the set up and logistics and provisions for their planned Gathering for Peace, Understanding and Hope, they actually got more volunteers than they could use. "That's never happened," said one staff member.
I was there with our Zen group. We set up mats and cushions at one edge of  the hub-bub, and did some public meditation for peace. I set out a sign to let all the passers-by know they were invited to join us on one of the empty cushions "for a few minutes, or longer as you like." Another sign said, "Peace doesn't end with inner peace. It just begins there."
There were speakers -- for about 6 or 7 minutes each -- on the half-hour -- which served as a nice timer for our sits.

This evening I'll be at the "Day for Peace and Unity" event at our downtown  plaza.