The people who organize the annual SevenDays® week full of events to promote interfaith understanding and peace have set the 2018 dates -- April 10-16. And the annual walk connected with those events will start this year at the National World War I Museum.
All of this began after a neo-Nazi murdered three people outside of Jewish facilities in the Kansas City area in April 2014, William Corporon, his grandson, Reat Underwood, and Teresa LaManno. Mindy Corporon, daughter of William and mother of Reat, joined with Teresa's husband, Jim LaManno, and others to create an uplifting response to this hatred.
SevenDays® is sponsored by the Faith Always Wins Foundation and LaManno-Hastings Family Foundation in partnership with other organizations. It creates a theme for each of the seven days -- "Love, Discover, Others, Connect, Go, You and Onward" -- and puts on events and programming under the theme "make a ripple, change the world."
Here's a link to an interview I did with Mindy in 2015 about how she came to understand -- and respond to -- the evil that afflicted her family.
The annual walk in 2018 will take place on Monday, April 16, starting at the National World War I Museum and Memorial. The walk will circle the grounds of the memorial. After the first of the year you can register for the walk at the SevenDays® link I've given you in the first paragraph above here.
There also will be several activities before the actual SevenDays® week, and those will be announced soon. The week itself will begin with an interfaith program and awards ceremony. A 16-member interfaith youth planning team, working in partnership with the Kansas City Interfaith Youth Alliance, is working on ways to make all of the events available on the internet. And there will be a scholarship competition for high school seniors and a songwriting competition, too. That information also is available on the SevenDays® website.
Mindy Corporon has been a remarkably resilient spark plug behind all of this, beginning the very day of the shootings when she showed up and spoke at an evening prayer vigil at which I and many others spoke.
Supporting efforts she and others have made is a strong way of saying no to the hatred represented by the shooter on that sad day. Although he meant to murder Jews, he wound up killing three Christians. But because Jews as a people were targeted, they also have had to find ways to respond. Here's is a column I wrote for Flatland about that subject.
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THE POPE'S HOT NEW RIDE
Did you see the slick new Lamborghini that Pope Francis got the other day? Well, he didn't buy it. It was a gift. And he's not keeping it. He's selling it with the proceeds going to three charities. But I hope he got at least one ride in it and that fun photos of that were taken, although that will give his critics something new to use in their #FakeNews about him. Sigh.