WARWICK — The Rhode Island Police Chiefs’ Association is pleased to announce its partnership with Bishop Hendricken High School to host the Unity 2020 – “Coming Together as A Community – A Faith and Blue Event” as part of the first National Faith and Blue Weekend.
Saturday, Oct. 10 at 3 p.m.
The rain date will be Sunday, Oct. 11 at 3 p.m.
Bishop Hendricken Dennis Hayden Football Field, 2615 Warwick Ave., Warwick
The Unity 2020 – “Coming Together as A Community – A Faith and Blue Event” will feature brief speeches, prayers and face-to-face breakout sessions and discussions between Rhode Island Police Chiefs and faith leaders. The event will focus on forming and growing valuable connections between law enforcement and the faith-based community.
“One of the promises the Rhode Island Police Chiefs made as part of the Twenty for 2020 Campaign in June was holding and participating in face-to-face, open forums with our communities,” said Lincoln Police Chief and RIPCA President Brian Sullivan. “We are grateful to Father Marciano and Bishop Hendricken for their participation and partnership in coordinating this special event. The faith community is an important connection to the local communities across our state, and we are looking forward to the meaningful dialogue that will be facilitated as part of this program.”
The event, part of the nationwide Faith and Blue initiative by MovementForward and sponsored by the Department of Justice, is designed to foster dialogue between local law enforcement and the communities they serve, especially those who feel disconnected or discriminated against.
The full program of events is outlined below:
- National Anthem – BHHS Music Department
- President’s welcome and greeting – Father Robert Marciano, President, BHHS
- Opening Prayer – Chaplain Rev. Hance Philippe – Lincoln Police Department
- RI Police Chief Association Message – Chief Brian Sullivan, RIPCA President/Chief, Lincoln Police Department
- Remarks – William Ferland, Chief of the Criminal Division, United States Attorney for the District of Rhode Island
- Remarks – Colonel Rick Rathbun, Chief, Warwick Police Department
- Department Breakouts – Chiefs and Clergy member(s)
- Wrap Up – Song: Let There be Peace on Earth – BHHS Music Department
“Bishop Hendricken is honored to partner with the members of our many faith communities and their leaders as well as our dedicated law enforcement officials to begin this year-long, and hopefully lifelong, dialogue to foster peace, understanding, and justice with all of whom we serve,” said Father Marciano, president of Bishop Hendricken High School. “These trying times are no match for our good intentions and our working together on behalf of others.”
The public is invited to be part of Unity 2020 to help establish Rhode Island as a leader in cooperation, justice and peace. The event is free and open to people of all faiths. Also in attendance will be Imam Farid Ansari of the Muslim American Dawah Center of Rhode Island, Wendy Joering from the Jewish Alliance of Rhode Island and Father Marcos Girgis from the St. Mary & St. Mena Coptic Orthodox Church.
All attendees must adhere to the Bishop Hendricken campus COVID-19 health and safety policies, including sign-in, contact-less temperature screening, mask-wearing at all times and physical distancing.
About National Faith & Blue Weekend (NFBW)
The mission of National Faith and Blue Weekend, Oct. 9-12, is to facilitate safer and stronger communities by engaging law enforcement officers and local residents through the connections of houses of worship.
NFBW is an extension of the One Congregation One Precinct initiative (OneCOP), a program of MovementForward, Inc. which is a solutions-focused, human & civil rights organization based in Atlanta, Georgia. The OneCOP initiative pairs officers at the beat or precinct level with local houses of worship. Similarly, NFBW is facilitated by law enforcement entities, faith-based organizations and the community.
NFBW organizers represent every major national law enforcement group and faith tradition in the United States of America. The effort is being co-convened by OneCOP and the USDOJ Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office) to organize the most collaborative police-community engagement project in recent history.