C e n t e r  f o r  I n t e r f a i t h  E n c o u n t e r



First Year List of Activities

Christian Sacred Texts: John Gospel Diversity Fest



General & Specific Comments on Year 2000's Special Activities

The vast majority of CIE's public programs this year were free and open to all. For the most part, our Sacred Texts programs occurred at Christ Church Newman Center, St. Cloud. From January through June 2000, advance and current information concerning such events was regularly posted on bulletin boards of some local superstores and in the Daily Events sections of local newspapers. At times there were newspaper reports on some of these activities, all of them favorable. For example, the April 2000 Easter issue of the St. Cloud Visitor carried an article on p.15. The John Gospel serial presentation (of June 2000) was featured in that article by Mike Killeen titled "John's Gospel to be Focus of Summer Series led by Women."

In the June 16 issue of the St. Cloud Times ("More Local" section, p.1B), John Molene published several columns on the John Gospel Diversity Fest which was to commence the following day. The article carried the Fest's schedule including details of the locations of the various events from June 17 through 24. On June 21, midway through the Fest, a snippet in the "Daily Events" section 'In religion' appeared in the St. Cloud Times, p. 3B. Again, thanks to friends in local radio stations, such as WJON and KCFB Christian Radio, some listeners in and around St. Cloud may have heard of the Fest. Franciscan Sister Adela Gross, Director of the Office of Multicultural Ministry, had a short article on the Fest published in newspapers in the Foley, Little Falls, and Duluth areas.

During the first six months of CIE's existence, world renowned pianist Mr. Mark Ochu, a member of the Baha'i Spiritual Assembly of St. Cloud, generously offered at his residence thematic dinners and receptions to all those who attended CIE's Sacred Texts events. This free hospitality consisted of now an Iranian cuisine, now Egyptian, now Mexican, now Jewish, now South Asian Indian cuisine, and so on, as deemed by host Ochu appropriate for the presentation of the day. Besides these ongoing receptions, Mr. Ochu hosted a special reception at 12 noon on Sunday June 18, at his residence in honor of the main presenter of the John Gospel Diversity Fest, Sister Rekha Chennattu, a graduate student at Catholic University, Washington DC. At least 50 persons attended the reception, including friends from as far north as Deerwood, MN, and from as far east as St. Paul, MN.