Former Archbishop of Canterbury takes star role in anniversary celebrations

A visit by a former Archbishop of Canterbury helped to mark the 10th anniversary of the East London Three Faiths Forum.

More than 100 people gathered at the Ilford Islamic Centre, Albert Road, Ilford, on Monday to listen to Lord Carey of Clifton, who was the archbishop from 1991 to 2002.

After his address, keynote responses were given by Khola Hasan and Sheikh Dr Suhaib Hasan, Rabbi Aryeh Sufrin and Stephen Shashoua, director of the national Three Faiths Forum.

The meeting was held in the venue where the East London Three Faiths Forum – encompassing Redbridge, Newham, Waltham Forest and Barking – was born nearly 10 years ago.

Mr Sufrin, of the Chabad Lubavitch Centre, Eastern Avenue, Gants Hill, said: “Lord Carey spoke of how communities can build further on what brings us together, rather than what divides us.

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“I echoed what he said.”

He added: “The Three Faiths Forum has been active for 10 years and when you look around the room, it is full of middle-aged and elderly people.

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“The biggest challenge, something churches, synagogues and mosques are facing, is to get young people involved.

“We’ve got to take the Three Faiths Forum to the younger generation. They are the future leaders.”

Rabbi David Hulbert of Bet Tikvah Synagogue, Perrymans Farm Road, Newbury Park, said: “He [Lord Carey] went to Gatwick straight after to take a flight to the States, so we were very grateful he was able to talk to us.”

Mr Hulbert said the anniversary had been “extremely well attended and a wonderful reason for celebration”.

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