“Indeed, God commands justice, doing good to others, as well as courtesy to close relatives. He forbids indecency, wickedness, and aggression. He instructs you so perhaps you will be mindful.” (16:90 )            “For every day on which the sun rises, there is a (reward from God) for the one who establishes justice among people.” (al-Bukhari)            “And thus have We willed you to be a community of the middle way, so that [with your lives] you may bear witness to the truth before all humankind. . .” (2:143)            “Dispensers of justice will be seated on pulpits of light beside God.” (Muslim)            “Do not spread corruption in the land after it has been set in order. And call upon Him with hope and fear. Indeed, Allah’s mercy is always close to the good-doers.” (7:56)           “Even an ant in its hole and fish (in the depth of water) invoke blessings on someone who teaches people goodness.” (al-Tirmidhi)            “O believers! Remain conscious of God, and be with those who are truthful in word and deed.” (9:119)           “God does not judge you according to your bodies and appearances, but He looks into your hearts and observes your deeds.” (Muslim)            “The parable of those who spend their possessions for the sake of God is that of a grain out of which grow seven ears, in every ear a hundred grains: for God grants manifold increase unto whom He wills; and God is infinite, all-knowing.” (2:261)           “Charity does not diminish wealth.” (Riyadh al-Salihin)            “Let there be a group among you who call ˹others˺ to goodness, encourage what is good, and forbid what is evil-it is they who will be successful.” (3:104)           “Avoid cruelty and injustice...and guard yourselves against miserliness, for this has ruined nations who lived before you.” (Riyadh al-Salihin)            “Do not forget to show kindness to each other. Surely God observes your actions.” (2:237)           “(Allah) has revealed to me that you should adopt humility so that no one oppresses another.” (Riyadh al-Salihin)            “It is We who sent down this Reminder (al-Quran) and it is We who shall preserve it.” (15:9)           “The best among you are those who learn the Quran and teach it (to others).” (al-Bukhari)            “So remember Me; I will remember you. And be grateful to Me and do not deny Me.” (2:152)           “There are two blessings that many people lose -- health and free time for doing good.” (al-Bukhari)            “Say: 'O My servants who have transgressed against your own souls, do not despair of God's mercy, for God forgives all sins. It is He who is the Forgiving, the Merciful.'“(39:53)           “Happy is the man who avoids dissension, but how fine is the man who is afflicted and shows endurance.” (Abu Dawud)            “And you love wealth with immense love.” (89:20)           “Being rich does not mean having a great amount of property, but (it) is being content (with what one has).” (al-Bukhari)            “Every soul is held in pledge for its deeds.” (74:38)           “Make things easy and convenient and don't make them harsh and difficult. Give cheer and glad tidings and do not create hatred.” (al-Bukhari & Muslim)           

All Faiths Festival Set To Help People In Need

Sunday Event In Roseville Will Include Free Counseling

One people, same needs.

That’s the message metro Detroit religious figures of different faiths are delivering to people who need help with a variety of issues.

In the first-of-its-kind All Faiths Festival at 2:30 p.m. Sunday at the Sacred Heart of Jesus Church in Roseville, Christian, Muslim and Jewish representatives are rallying together to reach out to area residents seeking spiritual guidance during tough economic times. They will provide free counseling to individuals and families who have experienced hardships ranging from unemployment, depression, substance abuse and mortgage foreclosures.

By addressing issues that extend beyond religious boundaries, the organizers hope to foster understanding among the various spiritual beliefs.

“Our objective is also to bring the faiths closer in terms of building bridges and helping one another,” said Imam Steve Elturk of the Islamic Organization of North America in Warren. “Basically, the message that we’d like to get across to them is that we’re here to help.”

The idea for the festival came about earlier this year when a group of religious men gathered to discuss concerns that have been brought to their attention in recent years. Among the group: the Rev. Lawrence Ventline on behalf of the Archdiocese of Detroit, Elturk, David Kasbow from the American Clergy Leadership of Warren and Rabbi Mordehi Waldman of Mt. Clemens.

The group decided the event, which includes a panel discussion on faith and breakout sessions on various topics from financial problems to one that Ventline will lead for children coping with emotions in stressed families, could serve as a starting point.

The group is exploring the possibility of hosting a similar festival in the fall in another metro Detroit city.

As director of a program called Care of the Soul, Ventline counsels Catholics on their religion as well as mental and physical health. He said the event comes at a good time because he’s noticed some alarming trends tied in with the depressed economy.

He has seen about a 50% rise in prescription drug and alcohol abuse along with people contemplating suicide in the past couple of years. While some people are referred to a psychiatrist, Ventline generally encourages them to take care of their bodies with healthy diets and exercise while turning to God.

“It’s like a counter stool people sit on — three legs: physical, emotional and spiritual,” he said. The free festival can accommodate up to 500 guests.

Contact CHRISTY OYAMA-ARBOSCELLO at 586-826-7263 or arboscello@freepress.com.

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