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Interfaith Programs

Officiating at an Interreligious Wedding in Colombia

Bogotá, Colombia - The first interfaith wedding in my role as Manhig (prayer leader) of Shéggel took place on October 30, 2010 in Bogotá, Colombia.

The groom was Marcelo Olicki Erlach, son of Simón Olicki and Zuleima Erlach, an Israeli Jew and professional in agricultural technology. The bride was Nancy Vergara Suárez, daughter of Israel Vergara and Hilda Suárez, a Colombian Catholic and teacher.

In July, the engaged couple asked Rabbi Richard Gamboa to bless their marriage. During the following months they participated in counseling in preparation for forming an interfaith family. The parents of the bride and groom also participated in the preparations. The couple and their parents undertook the challenge of promoting interfaith families and becoming ambassadors to promote interreligious reconciliation and peace.

The groom and bride legalized their union according to Colombian law marriage the same day of their wedding, Saturday, October 30, 2010. The ceremony, which I officiated with my wife, Magnolia Rojas, included elements of Jewish and Christian traditions as well as the World Peace Marriage Blessings officiated by UPF founder Rev. Sun Myung Moon and his wife, Mrs. Hak Ja Han Moon.

The word Shéggel is an acronym of the Hebrew words for Global Service for Peace.

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