Latter-day Saint Member of Parliament Mr Su'a William Sio spoke to guests at the Wellington Interfaith Council's annual 'Season of Light' concert last Saturday (10 December).
The concert was attended by representatives of many faith groups. Amnesty International representatives were also present to commemorate Human Rights Day.
In his remarks Mr Sio mentioned the importance of finding unity in diversity, respecting differences and "sharing the light we have within our minds and our hearts." Quoting Sir Paul Reeves, Mr Sio encouraged those present that "despite our differences it is incumbent upon us to stay connected to those around us and find ways to support those who are poor, share with those who have not and leap out of our comfort zones in sharing together."
Various groups prayed, read scriptures, or performed at the concert at St Peters on Willis in Wellington, including Hare Krishna, Sikh, Buddhist, Baha'i, Catholic Missionaries of Charity, Sai Baba, Latter-day Saints, Jews, and Anglican Bishop Richard Randerson, from St Peters on Willis, where the concert was held.
"A respect for the diverse beliefs and unique contributions of all the world's faiths is one of the hallmarks of Mormonism," states the Church's Newsroom website. "From the earliest days of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Joseph Smith elevated the principle of religious liberty and tolerance: 'We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may' (Articles of Faith 1:11)."
Read more about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' approach to interfaith relations here.