Jerry GrammerWelcome to the website of the Neighbourhood Interfaith Group, a North Toronto multidenominational interfaith group.

Our group was founded some 30 years ago when two churches and two synagogues came to together to improve and encourage interfaith communication and understanding.

Our mandate is to work toward ending bias, bigotry and racism in Toronto.  We seek to achieve our mandate by encouraging interfaith dialogue, respect and understanding.

Since its founding, the Neighbourhood Interfaith Group has grown and is now comprised of five churches, six synagogues, one Muslim organization and one school.  All of our members embrace the benefits in multi-cultural Toronto of improving interfaith understanding and dialogue to ending bias, bigotry, and racism in our community.

Over the years, The Neighbourhood Interfaith Group has annually culminated its activities with a dinner or a speaker’s event with a range of speakers from many religions.  Please see some of our past events for a list of speakers.   These annual events, with speakers alternating among the three major Abrahmic faiths, have brought people of multiple faiths together for an interfaith social event.  With such events, having people of different faiths communicate over a meal and/or refreshments, better understanding of our similarities and respect for our differences is developed.

Our 31st Annual Event will be on Thursday May 11, 2017, at Noor Cultural Centre (123 Wynford Drive, North York, M3C 1K1). There will be a buffet vegetarian dinner, with certified kosher option available by advance order. The discussion topic is “Islamophobia and Antisemitism: Common Roots, Common Challenge.”, addressed by Professor Ivan Kalmar, with discussants Professor Stephen B. Scharper and Azeezah Kanji.

Ivan Kalmar is Professor of Anthropology and the Hon. Newton W. Rowell Professor at Victoria College, at the University of Toronto.  His work has focused on the image of “the Jew” in western Christian cultural history, and how it is related to the image of “the Muslim”.  Prof Kalmar has written a large number of articles on this subject. He wrote the books The Trotskys, the Freuds, and the Woody Allens and Early Orientalism: Imagined Islam and the Notion of Sublime Power. He co-edited the book, Orientalism and the Jews. His latest research is about Islamophobia in the previously communist areas of the European Union.

Stephen Bede Scharper is associate professor at the School of the Environment and the Department for the Study of Religion at the University of Toronto.

Azeezah Kanji has a JD from University of Toronto Faculty of Law and an LLM (Islamic law specialization) from the School of Oriental and African Studies, UK.

Tickets are $15. The purchase deadline is 3pm Monday May 8.

For tickets or information, please contact your congregational representative, or the event co-chairs Gary Posner (gary@posnerma.com) or Samira Kanji (skanji@noorculturalcentre.ca).
We look forward to seeing you there!

Thank you,

Jerold Grammer
Chair, Neighbourhood Interfaith Group.