On the most recent “Faith Matters” hosts Nancy Broner, Executive Director of the OneJax Institute at the University of North Florida and Kyle Reese, board member of OneJax and senior pastor of Hendricks Avenue Baptist Church how the interaction with natural resources can be discussed as a matter of faith. They said most people of faith have an appreciation for interacting with nature.         

They were joined by Florida Times-Union columnist Mark Woods, author of the book ”Lassoing the Sun; A year in America’s National Parks,” and Quinton White, Executive Director of the Marine Science Research Institute and Professor of Biology and Marine Science at Jacksonville University.

A group of local faith leaders also joined the conversation; Rev. Tom Walker Pastor and Head of Staff at Palms Presbyterian Church at Jacksonville Beach; Pastor Phillip Baber with the Unitarian Universalist Church and Adah Shair, Structural Engineer for HDR Inc. and former Interfaith Youth Core Coach at the University of North Florida. 

A panel discussion titled “Peace in the Middle East: Inspiring Voices and Stories” took place Sunday at UNF.

The event, moderated by WJCT's Melissa Ross, explored the conflict between Israel and Palestine, and how faith communities how could help to resolve it.

First Coast Connect fill-in host Jessica Palombo continues that conversation with some of the nationally recognized faith leaders who took part in the event: Rabbi Donniel Hartman, president of the New York and Jerusalem based Shalom Hartman Institute; Imam Abduallah Antepli, chief representative of Muslim affairs and former chaplain at Duke University; and the Reverend Molly Marshall, president and professor of theology and spiritual formation at Central Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas.

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  The Interfaith Center at the University of North Florida recently awarded its first scholarship for interfaith community service to two students committed to interfaith work.

The Interfaith Center offers services to educate students and advance cooperation.

During an appearance on WJCT's “First Coast Connect,” Kalilah Jamall and Clare Stern, winners of the scholarship, talked about their interfaith work.

We discuss the week's biggest news stories with our roundtable of local journalists: Dan Scanlan, Florida Times-Union reporter; Fred Matthews, Examiner blogger; Tim Gibbons, Jacksonville Business Journal editor; and Andrew Pantazi, Florida Times-Union reporter.

Topics include the shooting in Charleston, South Carolina, pension reform and more.

We also preview several events taking place on the First Coast to welcome new citizens into the city in honor of World Refugee Day this week.

University of North Florida

With religious extremism in the headlines, a lecture at the University of North Florida tonight is aimed at promoting cooperation between people of all faiths. The school is hosting author Eboo Patel as part of its Oneness of Humanity celebration.

Patel says he hopes his talk reaches people beyond the UNF campus.

“My hope is to tell an inspiring story of interfaith cooperation in the past that inspires us to even better for our future," he says. 

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Jacksonville's interfaith coalition focusing on issues of poverty, crime, social justice and more has some new leadership for 2014.