On Sunday, January 7, 2020, nearly  400 people gathered at Wentz Hall on North Central College’s campus in Naperville for the 15th Annual DuPage County World Peace Day Interfaith Prayer Service. As in past years, the Wheaton Franciscans were one of the sponsors of this event.

The theme for this year’s service was “2020 Vision: Seeking a World Where Everyone Belongs.

The program celebrated various faith traditions with prayers or songs from representatives of Christian,  Jewish, Hindu, Muslim, Latter Day Saints, Christian Science, Baha’i and Sikh communities. The keynote speaker was Regina Brent, founder and president of the nonprofit Unity Partnership. Her remarks  provided a sad reminder that the vision of an all-inclusive society is still far reality.

At the conclusion of the program the audience joined in a communal affirmation of commitment to compassion by chanting “everyone belongs” in response to a series of affirmations based on the U.N. General Assembly’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights, delivered in a range of languages including Hebrew, Arabic, Chinese, Hindi, Punjab, and English.

A reception followed the event with an opportunity to visit information tables from the various sponsoring organizations. Jeanne Connolly, Director of Charism and Mission, represented the Wheaton Franciscans at their information table.

Universal Declaration of Human Rights