Cincinnati, Ohio, August 14, 2022 (Yes Punjab News)
For the fifth consecutive year, Ohioans came together at the Cincinnati “Festival of Faiths” organized by “Equasion” to celebrate thirteen major world religions at Xavier University. It was an inclusive gathering of different communities with over 30 religious organizations and community service vendors gathered to educate the community about various religions, civic and social matters.
Sikhs from Cincinnati & neighboring cities including Dayton participated in the event. Guru Nanak Society of Greater Cincinnati Gurdwara Sahib served Langar (community kitchen food) at the event. Visitors were happy to know about the importance of Langar and service in Sikhism and thanked the Sikh community members.
Bhai Amrik Singh, Head Granthi Cincinnati Gurdwara sang Gurbani Kirtan joined by other Sikh community members. Sikh exhibition table included books, brochures and Kakkars (5K’s). Booklets with information about Sikhs were distributed to visiting guests. Community members also organized turban tying sessions to learn about its significance.
The festival was immersed in the colors and traditions of the Sikh Culture. Visitors who got the turbans tied, including children, adults, police officers and disabled were seen excited, taking pictures and proudly walking around with the turban on their head. For many, this was their first experience about the local Sikh community in the region.
The organizers paid tribute to the co-chair of the conference Jaipal Singh, who left this world in May 2022, after a brief but brave battle with gastric cancer. Chip Harrod, Executive Director of the Festival said, “we have 13 world faiths participating in this festival and the most prominent among them is our local Sikh community that contributed in a variety of ways to the joy and excitement of today’s event.
One of the reasons we are all here is due to the efforts of one of our founders Jaipal Singh, who gave everything he had to creating a festival that would create education, empathy, understand and love between our many faith-based traditions here in greater Cincinnati area. We are debited to Jaipal for all that he did for us and he is with us in spirit.”
Aasees Kaur, wife of late Jaipal Singh in her speech to the audience said that Jaipal was a fervent advocate of interfaith relations. Tributes were paid to the 6 Sikhs killed on August 5, 2012 by a White Supremacist gunman 10 years ago at Wisconsin’s Oak Creek Gurdwara.
Bhai Amrik Singh, Head Granthi Cincinnati Gurdwara said that at the festival today, we shared the message of Gurbani “Eaek Pithaa Eaekas Kae Ham Baarik Thoo Maeraa Gur Haaee” i.e. “The One God is our father; we are the children of the One God,” to the people of different faiths who have come here.