So in case you were unaware, we rent our lovely house from All Saints and they are very supportive of us in this whole interfaith project. So, we thought we’d share our annual report to the church with you so that you can see what we’ve been up to this year!
Introduction: Who are We
In 2012, Faith House had an exciting and memorable year filled with many accomplishments that actively deepened the community’s commitment to interfaith dialogues and social justice work. In living out our mission to be a hospitable, inclusive, and engaging intentional interfaith community, Faith House has been the home to a number of events and gatherings, people on a journey passing through, and of communal and individual spiritual growth for those who have lived here. This past year has seen one of our founding members, Kaitlyn, move on to more agrarian things as well as a number of new faces as we celebrated the start of our third year in September. The house, internally, has arguably reflected more diversity than ever before, with Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, and other spiritual backgrounds all represented amongst those living here coupled with upwards of seven languages spoken amongst men and women of diverse sexual orientations. We have strived to be a living safe space where are all welcomed to be who they are and engage in meaningful discussion and have a place at the table.
Growth Community: Major Faith House Community Events and Activities
Over 2012, Faith House Ottawa joined the Ottawa Network of Spiritual Progressives, worked on the Common Grounds Anti-Oppression Project, Faith House Community Garden, and hosted more than one interfaith community gathering a month. The Ottawa Network of Spiritual Progressives (ONSP) is a long term project between the Muslims for Progressive Values Ummah Canada (MPV) and Faith House to co-host monthly discussions open to the community. During the summer, Faith House worked with various community members on the Common Ground Project. The Common Ground Project was a nationwide project aimed at promoting multiculturalism and pluralism in Canada. Faith House Ottawa was engaged in the initial discussion and the formation of an alternative format of Anti-Oppression workshop focusing on race issues that allowed People of Colour (POC) and People with White Privilege (PWP) to unlearn and deconstruct oppression.
The Faith House Community Garden was a collaborative project between members of Faith House Ottawa, All Saints Youth Group, friendly gardening enthusiasts in the community, and the generous support of land from All Saints Sandy Hill Anglican Church. The community garden allowed members of Faith House Ottawa to better understand our connection and relationship to the Earth, to the food that we consume, on how we can nurture ourselves and our community, and food justice and sustainability issues. Also, as a part of this project, Faith House has started vermicomposting as well in an effort to reduce our waste production and environmental footprint. It is our hope that we can continue this project into 2013.
Throughout the year, Faith House Ottawa hosted number interfaith events that allowed the House of share our goals and space with the wider community. Some of the notable events includes Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper, Wiebo’s War Film & Interfaith Discussion, a group visit to God(s): A User’s Guide exhibition at the Museum of Civilization, End of Semester BBQ & Fundraiser for Development & Peace, the Open Table, and Faith House Summer Open Mic and Potluck Celebration. From time to time, we also linked up with partner organizations and individual in the community to promote their events and causes.
List of Notable Faith House Events in 2012
- Ottawa Network of Spiritual Progressives Meet & Greet
- “2013 New Year’s Bash @ Faith House Ottawa!” – Potlock
- Community Potlucks
- Faith House Community Garden
- Community Summer Interfaith Barbeques
- Faith House Long Weekend BBQ!
- Faith House Summer Open Mic and Potluck Celebration
- End of the Semester BBQ & Fundraiser for Development & Peace
- February Museum of Civilization – God(s): A User’s Guide
- Wiebo’s War’ Film & Interfaith Discussion
- Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper
- Muslims for Progressive Values (MPV) Partnership
- Anti-Oppression Common Grounds Project
Our Communication Outreach and New Media
We maintain our Facebook page and email as primary conduits of information diffusion and discussion and as methods of communicating with various other communities and individuals with whom we seek to engage. A WordPress website/blog has recently come to fruition. It gives some background on what we’re about and who we are, as well as updates of happenings at Faith House: faithhouseottawa.wordpress.com.
Additionally, at the request of discussion participants, we are using the blog to maintain summaries of the ONSP monthly discussions and to allow for some connection between participants who wish to share resources.
We would like to acknowledge and give a special thank you to All Saints Sandy Hill Anglican Church and all of our community supporters and allies in the Ottawa and across Canada over the years. Let’s keep on building the fire higher!
We look forward to an exciting and busy 2013 as we seek to build and strengthen meaningful relationships, grounded in our social justice, framework of anti-oppression framework and radical hospitality, with all those, inside and outside the house, which whom form our community.
If you have any question or want to contact us for future collaborations, please do not hesitate to contact us at our coordinates below.
With love and Peaceful vibes,