Interfaith group offering variety of spiritual practices

Gratitude Gathering 2016 set for Saturday in Livermore

Interfaith Interconnect of the Tri-Valley is hosting Gratitude Gathering 2016, a program to let participants experience ways gratitude is expressed in various faith traditions and other spiritual practices.

The free event will take place from 9 a.m. to noon Oct. 8 at Asbury United Methodist Church, 4743 East Ave. in Livermore. Attendees are welcome to attend all or part of the morning. No registration is required.

Check-in begins at 9 a.m. with light refreshments and time to socialize, with composer Don Lewis of Pleasanton playing music. "Dedication of the morning" will take place in the sanctuary at 9:30 a.m. with opening words by Feraidoon Mojadedi, reflecting on Islam and Gratitude, and Lewis will play music on the organ and piano, including leading participants in a song of gratitude, "One More Day" by Margaret Douroux.

Other sessions will include:

* Zaheer Mohammad leading zhikr, the Islamic spoken remembrance of Allah.

* Forms of prayer and chant from Catholic, Hindu and Jewish traditions led by Franciscan Brother Michael Minton of San Damiano Retreat Center, Shanta and Indira Bulkin of East West Sanskrit Institute and Emma Root of Congregation Beth Emek.

* Marcella McCormick, yoga and meditation teacher, facilitating a session on walking and seated mindfulness meditation.

* Judy Hughes of First Presbyterian Church, Livermore leading participants in the practice of walking the labyrinth.

* Fariba Mizban offering a session on sacred drumming.

* Gratitude expressed through the art form of collage facilitated by Linda Culpepper of Asbury Methodist.

* Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints performing sacred music and leading participants in song.

More details are on the Facebook page of Interfaith Interconnect, which comprises 16 Tri-Valley congregations. Visit its website at

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