Giving Thanks Together
By: Gloria L. Evenson
Thanksgiving for many in Edgewater means an inter-faith Thanksgiving service, sponsored annually by the Edgewater Clergy and Rabbi Association (ECRA).
Held at a different house of worship each year, the service includes music, scripture readings and lectures by representatives of some of ECRA’s more than 20 member organizations. A combined choir from the various faiths also takes part in the worship. A free-will offering goes to Care For Real, a non-profit community outreach program formed in 1970 by ECRA and the Edgewater Community Council.
About 30 years old, ECRA was founded by Rabbi Herman Schaalman (now retired) of the Emmanuel Congregation, 5959 N. Sheridan. Its function has been to promote ecumenical unity and better serve the community. ECRA’s present membership includes Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Jewish and several Protestant denominations. Leaders from these groups meet on a regular basis for a luncheon, prayer and discussion.
Another annual ECRA event is its community week of prayer, held several nights the third week in January, at a different place of worship each night. Both the week of prayer and the inter-faith Thanksgiving service are open to the public. For more information contact Rev. Dean Hay.