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Santa Monica Interfaith Council Held May Event to Affirm Their Commitment to Peace, Understanding, and Unity

At the recent event, were, from left, Angela Scott, President of the League of Women Voters; Kathleen Benjamin, President of Santa Monica Area Interfaith Council and the General Advisory Board SMC; and right, Ericka Leslie, Chair of the Santa Monica Rent Control Board, and Chair of the Black Agenda.

In early May, the Santa Monica Area Interfaith Council according to Council President Kathleen Benjamin, “held an “Interfaith Affirmation of Our Common Humanity” at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Santa Monica. She expressed that this was not a celebration, but a powerful gathering to affirm their commitment to peace, understanding, and unity. It’s a time to support each other in a cause that transcends our individual beliefs and backgrounds.    


They were to “remember the past and defend the future,” as the cover of their invitation read. The evening program involved music, sacred readings, reflections, poems, prayer, and inspirational work that reflects what is on the minds of our local clergy, and (many of us).


In attendance, were Rev. Jeremial Kalendae, Rabbi Shira Freid-lin, Rev. Janet Gollery McKeithen, Rabbi Neil Comess-Daniels, Rev. Leon Campbell, Rev. Christie Webb, Pastor Carolyn Baskin-Bell, and more. 


Kathleen explained that it “took courage to have the event at this time. Giving everyone the opportunity to offer a prayer through our commemoration gave us hope.”


Meetings of the Santa Monica Area Interfaith Council are open to the community. Most meetings are held on Zoom. The next one will be on June 13. If you would like further details on this and another upcoming event, or if you would like to join the group, please email

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