The High Country Multi-faith Clergy and Leaders is not an organization, but a “web of connections” who believe in the power of building lasting relationships through shared worship, meaningful conversations, and learning to understand each other to more effectively respond in times of great societal need.
We meet 8-12 times per year, plan regular study retreats, and spontaneously plan local responses to attacks of hate on other houses of worship and their congregations with love, support, and action.
In June 2015, a group of High Country (North Carolina) clergy and leaders of faith communities gathered together after the shootings at Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina. We gathered in the wake of shootings in Orlando in June 2016, after the events in Charlottesville in August 2017, and again, after the shootings at a First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas in November 2017. We gathered with 500 High Country community members October, 2018 in the wake of the death and violence unleashed at Tree of Life Synagogue on a Saturday morning as the faithful gathered for worship. We gathered March, 2019 after the shootings at the Al Noor Mosque and Linwood Islamic Center in Christchurch, New Zealand.
Over the last four years, we have gathered as the High Country Multi-faith Clergy and Leaders to mourn and denounce racism, religious and ethnic hatred, and hate of “the other.”
We have found strength in our shared grief and power in our shared witness. Each of us speaks rooted and grounded in our own faith tradition, but completely open and respectful of other traditions that are present.
We have found common cause with our Jewish, Christian, Muslim, and Baha’i brothers and sisters, as well as with those of other faith traditions and with those who claim no faith tradition but are human beings of good will.