April 18, 2013

4-16-13 004One hundred people gathered on Saturday, April 13, 2013 to learn about caring for historic churches and synagogues.

“The workshop and our meetings with the Mayor and with religious and philanthropic leaders exceeded all our expectations,” reported Wendy Nicholas of WHALE.  “There is great interest across the board in helping New Bedford’s churches and synagogues be as vital and sustainable as possible.  This workshop is just the beginning.”

Robert Jaeger, President and Co-Founder of the national nonprofit group, Partners for Sacred Places, keynoted the workshop with a talk entitled The Halo Effect of Sacred Places: Preserving Architecture and Community Value.  His talk was recorded by Local Cable Access television; for broadcast schedule, see http://www.newbedford-ma.gov/CableAccess/Channel%2018/ProgramSchedule.html.  

Partners for Sacred Places teamed up with the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Work to quantify the economic value that churches and synagogues contribute to their communities.  Noting the many ways that religious organizations benefit their communities, the dollars they and their visitors spend in the local community each year, the value of their green spaces, and the importance of their mission work, Partners and UPenn dubbed this the ‘halo effect.’   Hear more for a live interview with the Editorial Board of the New Bedford Standard-Times:  http://www.southcoasttoday.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20130413/OPINION/130419945/-1/ARCHIVE