Multi-Faith Dawn Service on 1st January 2000
The Lord Mayor of Hobart, Rob Valentine, chose to Launch the International Year for the Culture of Peace at the Dawn Service at the Regatta Grounds in Hobart. He wanted a Multi-Faith Service to follow this Launch and Rev. Bob Faser and Pym Trueman, on behalf of the newly formed World Counference on Religion and Peace in Tasmania, were invited to liaise with the City Council staff to organise this Service. In the course of the consultations, the Baha'i Unity Choir was offered to sing, "Let there be Peace on Earth" at the close of the Launching ceremony and to combine with Rev. Bob Faser to sing a song which he had written specially for the close of the Multi-Faith Service.Rev. Bob then suggested that the Baha'i Unity Choir be offered to the other readers to provide a musical interlude for their readings. He said "They would be most comfortable to sing songs for other religious faiths".
Subsequently, the Baha'i Unity Choir sang Shalom Chaverim after the Jewish reading, A Buddhist chant after the Buddhist reading and even the Christian readers requested that they sing "The Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi". Newly ordained Michael Tate (previously a member of Parliament), represented the Catholic Church, Rev. Eric Smith, the Uniting Church and the Dean of St. David's Cathedral represented the Anglican Church, sharing the Christian readings as a group. After the Baha'i reading the Choir sang, "God Sufficeth" and closed the Service with "Blessed is the Spot" and joined with Rev. Faser for the song he composed.
The Lord Mayor expressed his appreciation for all the people who took part in the the Multi-Faith Service. The members of the Baha'i Unity Choir are to be congratulated for the time they spent rehearsing for this performance and for their presentation and also for being willing to get up at 4.00 in the morning to take part in the Dawn Service. This is a real test of Faith!
©Copyright 2000, Pym Trueman, NGO Liaison Officer in Tasmania