Community Events

Tuesday, November 21
7:30 pm
Winnetka Covenant Church
1200 Hibbard Road, (at Illinois Rd.)

Annual Thanksgiving Service

The New Trier Multifaith Alliance  will host its annual Interfaith Thanksgiving Service on Tuesday, November 21, at 7:30 pm, at Winnetka Covenant Church, 1200 Hibbard Road, (at Illinois Rd.) in Wilmette. The Alliance was previously known as the Winnetka Interfaith Council.

The Alliance’s Interfaith Choir, Children’s Choir, and representatives of various faith communities will lead attendees in music, prayer and thanksgiving.  The service is open to the general public.

The guest speaker is Dr. Rami Nashashibi, executive director of the Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN). He is a nationally known advocate for social justice and human dignity, and this month received the prestigious 2017 MacArthur Foundation Genius Award. In a recent Chicago Tribune interview, Dr. Nashashibi said his life’s work—as a grassroots organizer in a community of Latino, African-American, white and immigrant families from different religious backgrounds–is an example of what happens when people see their commonalities rather than differences.

Admission to the Thanksgiving event is offered free of charge. Light refreshments will be served following the keynote speaker’s presentation. In keeping with the Alliance members’ mission for social action, the New Trier Township Food Pantry will benefit from all free-will monetary offerings.

Questions about the venue may be directed to the Winnetka Covenant Church
office, (847) 446-4300, email


Dr. Nashashibi has lectured across the United States, Europe, and Asia on a range of topics related to American Muslim identity, community activism and social justice issues. In 2014, the Center for American Progress profiled Rami as one of the “14 Faith Leaders to Watch in 2014.” He was also named one of the “500 Most Influential Muslims in the World” by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Center in concert with Georgetown’s Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding. Previously, Chicago Public Radio selected him as one of the “Top Ten Chicago Global Visionaries.”

Dr. Nashashibi has served as the Executive Director of the Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN) since its founding in 1997. He has a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Chicago and is a Visiting Professor of Sociology of Religion & Muslim Studies at the Chicago Theological Seminary. He has worked with several leading scholars in the area of globalization, African American studies and urban sociology and has contributed chapters to edited volumes by Manning Marabel and Saskia Sassen.


October 12, 2017 

“What the Qur’an Meant: And Why It Matters”

This event featured Garry Wills, Ph.D., Emeritus Professor of History, Northwestern University. Malcolm Gladwell has called Prof. Wills, the Pulitzer-Prize winning historian, writer, and journalist “one of the great political writers of his time.” With his New York Times bestselling classics What Jesus MeantWhy I Am a Catholic, and Why Priests?, Prof. Wills has established himself as an authority on religion, American politics, and how they intersect. Now, after a lifetime spent thinking and writing about ChristianityProf. Wills takes on one his greatest intellectual challenges yet in What the Qur’an Meant: And Why It Matters.

The Qur’an is sacred to roughly 1.6 billion people. For Americans, understanding the Islamic faith has never been more important than it is now. What the Qur’an Meant offers Christian and non-Muslim readers the opportunity to expand their understanding of Islam through direct analysis of the text. Prof. Wills expertly contextualizes the Qur’an, comparing it with other sacred books that may be more familiar to non-Muslim readers, including the Old Testament and New Testament. Prof. Wills opens an interfaith dialogue just as he examines how the Qur’an has been misinterpreted and exploited: by politicians and pundits, by persons of other faiths unfamiliar with the basic facts of Islam, and by fearful persons who seek to prove that Islam is a religion of violence. As the country’s leading Catholic scholar, Prof. Wills intimately knows the ignorance of many Christians about Islam and the Qur’an. He felt compelled both personally and professionally to read the Qur’an in order to better understand the world around him.

Prof. Wills was interviewed by University Chaplain Tahera Ahmad, Associate Chaplain and Director of Interfaith Engagement, Northwestern University.

Evanston Township High School Auditorium, 1600 Dodge Ave., Evanston, IL 60201

Event was co-sponsored by Muslim Community Center Academy, and the New Trier Multifaith Alliance.