Interfaith Coalition Discusses Resolutions for Social Change at Fort Harrison Religious Retreat

Clearwater, Florida, UNITED STATES

CLEARWATER, Fla., Jan. 25, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- A coalition of Tampa Bay residents from various religious faiths met on Saturday the 21st of January in the ballroom of the Church of Scientology’s Fort Harrison, to come up with New Year resolutions for social issues. About 100 people from Catholic, Muslim, Nation of Islam, Unitarian Universalist, Christian Science, various Christian denominations and Scientology faiths attended.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at  

Father Bob Swick, senior chaplain for the Clearwater Police Department, delivered the opening prayer and the Church of Scientology’s Flag choir performed two inspirational numbers. Pat Harney, the Public Relations Director for the Church of Scientology was the MC. Special guest speaker was author and motivational speaker Terry Hitchcock, whose life was the subject of an award-winning documentary, My Run, narrated by Academy Award nominee Billy Bob Thornton. Mr. Hitchcock spoke about his life’s exploits to show that “Nothing is impossible” and how this could be applied to resolving social issues.

The audience was then broken down into panels to discuss drug abuse, crime, education, homelessness and human rights. Facilitators with experience in their subjects were chosen to run the panel.

One pastor said, “At one point in the room, you could feel a palpable change where people realized that we need each other, one person can make a difference and when we multiply an effort with more talents, we can discuss things on a bigger level. This is so important and it is the only way to bring change.”

At the end of the discussions draft resolutions by the interfaith group were presented by: Terry Hitchcock on the topic of Crime among Youth; Mark Phillips, anti-drug activist on the subject of drug abuse; Alex Melgarejo, Deputy ED of the Clearwater Community Learning Center on the subject of failing schools; Anna Harbour, Church of Scientology representative, on the subject of homelessness and Cristian Vargas, ED of United for Human Rights Florida office on human rights.

Pat Harney reported that throughout the year the coalition will follow up with the actions they recommended and announced the next coalition event will be on the 22nd of February in the Fort Harrison.

The Church of Scientology Flag Service Organization

The Church of Scientology Flag Service Organization is the international religious retreat for Scientologists all over the world. This Clearwater Church makes its historic Fort Harrison available free of charge to non­profit organizations to hold community events and supports area non­profits. Scientology's founder, L. Ron Hubbard once said, "On the day when we can fully trust each other there will be peace on Earth."

Interfaith Coalition at the Fort Harrison

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