To the Editor:
As representatives of multiple faith communities, we want to express our thoughts related to the most recent discussions and ultimate decision concerning the scheduling of High School Graduation on Friday, June, 21st at 5 p.m.
To begin, we voice our gratitude to Dr. Frances Stromsland, Superintendent of Schools, together with her administration, for her sensitivity to the religious issues associated with holding a graduation immediately prior to the start of the Jewish Sabbath.
Regardless of our religious orientation, each of us is aware of the many concerns that arise when public events are scheduled that interfere with religious observances. It is gratifying to know that such attention was given to this important matter.
It is regrettable that despite these sensitivities, the Board of Education chose to schedule this extraordinary lifecycle event so close to the Jewish Sabbath, causing conflicts for those who are observant.
As members of the Watchung Hills Interfaith Clergy Association, we work diligently to support each other in our sacred work and raise consciousness in the greater community. We are supportive of every effort of our diverse community to protect sacred time for our families and residents.
We hope that in the future you will allow us the opportunity to work with you in the fostering of mutual understanding and respect in the midst of calendar schedules.
Cantor Anna Berman, Temple Har Shalom, Warren
Michael Droege, Youth and Family Minister, Wilson Memorial Union Church, Watchung
Rev. Sean W. Kenney, Our Lady of the Mount Roman Catholic Church, Warren
Fr. Peter Krebs, S.T., The Shrine of St. Joseph and Trinity House Retreats, Stirling
Rev. Robert Kriesat, Advent Lutheran Church, Warren
Rev. Victoria Geer McGrath, Rector, All Saints Episcopal Church, Millington
Rev. J. Ronald Miller, Pastor Emeritus, Wilson Memorial Union Church, Watchung
Rabbi Randi Musnitsky, D. Min., Temple Har Shalom, Warren
Pastor Barbara Peters, Wilson Memorial Union Church, Watchung
Pastor Thomas Peters, First Presbyterian Church of Stirling, Stirling
Rev. Courtney Randall, Pastor, Mt. Horeb and Springdale UMC, Warren
Br. John Skrodinsky, S. T., The Shrine of St. Joseph, Stirling
Heather Valosin, Director of Pastoral Care, Trinity United Church, Warren
Pastor Debra M. Whitten, Union Village UMC, Warren