We're loaning the college the set of pictures we had produced for our Favourite Faiths Photo exhibition last year. They're not being used anywhere else during Inter Faith Week and it would be a pity for them to be left under wraps when they could be put to good use here. Well, not just "here": the collection will be split between the Melton and Brooksby campuses. These pictures were originally planned to be 16 in number - two for each of the member communities on Leicester Council of Faiths, one large, one small. I mentioned elsewhere on this blog (23 November 2011) that when these photos were digitally printed (direct onto thick mounting board) several of them were made too large to fit into the display spaces at Leicester People's Photographic Gallery. So the printer (John E. Wright) offered replacement copies at no extra cost and we were able to hold on to the originals too. We had no plans to use the pictures this year, so when Nicola Welbourne (photo above) of the college's Learner Services, asked if we had any visual material that could help beautify the room where their Interfaith Events Day is to be held next Wednesday (21 November) I jumped at the chance to offer these photos.
I'll be here for that day, with a display which will be "dual-badged" for Leicester Council of Faiths and Faith Awareness (the inter-faith programme of Christians Aware). It'll be a busy day for me: putting up the Council of Faiths table in the second Choice Unlimited at Leicester Tigers between 0630 and 0800; dashing out to the Melton campus for their Interfaith Events Day from 0930 till 1415; back to the Tigers, to front the display there till it closes at 1800; and keeping a watchful eye on the Highcross exhibition. I'm looking forward to it!
Even though the college is concentrating its Inter Faith Events Day into less than four hours on Wednesday, Nicola and her colleague Humera are already generating interest and enthusiasm around the college. They've prevailed upon staff in the Forestry and Arboriculture Department to provide an Interfaith Tree at both campuses on which students and staff are invited to hang heart-shaped labels bearing a wish, a prayer, a remembrance or something of that type. These will be collected for a blessing at the end of Inter Faith Week. You can see the Interfaith Tree to the right in the photo above. It's a big branch, spray-painted silver, stuck in an Oor Wullie style silver bucket; I'm going to see if we can get something like it for our exhibition in Highcross. And from Monday, prayers from different faiths will be circulated around the college, related to study, students or the theme of inter-faith dialogue and relations. I think they're doing a terrific job here.