The Building Bridges in Burnley 10 Year Celebrations launched with a 4.2 mile Faith Walk, that started at the All Saint’s church in Habergham with a prayer by BBB’s own Principal Officer. The first stop on the route was the Methodist church on Padiham Rd, where the walking group was met by a delegation from the church for a reading out of the bible and a prayer. The group then continued, picking up a few more walkers and crossed an epic looking walkway spanning the M65, coming out near the Barracks Train Station. Then it was down Westgate, with traffic slowing down to watch our interfaith group making its way into town. The next stop was the URC church on Bethesda st, where the group paused for a comfort break and to refresh themselves with water and fruit from our support vehicles and another prayer.
The group then walked through the town’s bustling high street, with shoppers pausing to view the spectacle of the now nearly 30 strong group of Christians and Muslims. Andy Williams, having joined the group at the start of the walk, led a prayer at his church, Sion Baptist, before the peeling of St Peter’s Church bells drew us back across Church St to find Tom Bill waiting for us at the memorial in the church grounds, to lead us in another prayer. By now the group had swelled even more and included children in prams and walking alongside their mothers.
The next destination was Masjid-e-Ibrahim, on the corner of Elm St and Clegg st, so we continued onto Colne Rd, took a short cut through the park and walked a short way along the canal into the Danehouse an Stoneyholme area. We were met outside the mosque by one of its members with a reading from the Holy Qur’an and an offer of fruit juice. A short walk from there found us at the Ghausia Masjid where we treated to a recitation of the Qur’an and a poem about the Prophet Muhammad by two of the children that attend the mosque. We then rejoined Colne Rd again to call in at Darul Islah Wattarabiyyah, where the young Imam, Maulana Firasat Razak talked about the center’s interfaith efforts and offered a prayer on behalf of the group. The group then recrossed Colne Rd to visit the Farooq-e-Azam mosque on North St and then on to St Andrew’s Church, where we were met by Father Peter Hapgood-Strickland and Maulana Yasir of the North St mosque. Then the final stretch saw us to St John the Baptist RC church for a hard earned rest and a lovely selection of cake. Father Michael Waters offered a concluded prayer and remarks, congratulating the walkers on their interfaithÂ pilgrimage.