Center For Interfaith Projects
     Promoting Understanding and Respecting Differences

History


I began exploring interfaith ideas and researching the interfaith movement as soon as I retired from teaching philosophy at Minnesota State University Moorhead. I had taught world religions, among other subjects, and, after leaving college teaching, I began to see the need to provide a wider community with the opportunity not only to learn about different religions but also to meet people in the Fargo-Moorhead community from different faith traditions.  Although still largely a Christian community, the FM area has been growing in religious diversity.  I saw a need to provide a way for religious strangers to come to know each other--a way to build bridges between faith communities. The interfaith movement is about encouraging people to leave their separate religious enclaves to engage each other in respectful dialogue and cooperative projects. I became convinced that this required opportunities for interfaith interaction that only an interfaith center could create on a regular basis. 

In September 2009 I asked myself the question: "If not now, when?"  With that, I began searching for a location in downtown Fargo. Within weeks I discovered a modest but attractive second floor room, with large windows facing Broadway. I immediately rented  the space. My task was to turn this room  into an interfaith library and religious display room. It took months to collect and shelve books on all the major faiths and to find icons and symbols that would represent the great diversity of faiths in the world. (See photos under Services). Later I rented a smaller adjoining room and turned it into an interfaith office (photo below).

I then began to recruit individuals from different faiths to create a religiously diverse board of directors. 
The first board meeting  of the Center for Interfaith Projects  was February 2, 2010. This marked the beginning of the Center as an interfaith organization--no longer my organization, but the public's organization. At that meeting, individuals representing eleven different faith perspectives introduced themselves to each other by sharing their spiritual stories. Over the next few months the board drafted and approved by-laws.  The Center's Grand Opening was May 15, 2010 at which there were blessings of the Center's space by representatives of the following traditions: Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Baha'i, Native American Spirituality, and Humanism. in August 2010 the Center was recognized as a 501c3 organization. 

We have now moved to 1201 13th Avenue North, Fargo, very close to NDSU (in the University Lutheran Center, a place committed to interfaith dialogue and understanding). 

David B. Myers, PhD: Founder and Executive Director