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Faiths completing plans for Games

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Though their preparations have been among the least visible of groups planning for the Olympic Games, the Salt Lake Interfaith Roundtable has worked to arrange for the faith needs of visitors and residents alike.

Through their efforts, three different informational guides will be available for visitors. A Calendar of Faith Events guide listing programs and events hosted by the faith community especially for visitors during the Games will be available at information booths and the airport. It will also be available on a new Web site produced by the roundtable at www.saltlakeinfo.org/html/interfaith_links.html which includes a brief history of some faiths, a page for Utah interfaith groups and another for faith-related organizations.

A Directory of Religious Services has also been produced by the roundtable, listing churches geographically with address, service times and contact information. It will be available to visitors at the same information booths and airport locations and on the Web at the same address.

Special religious events scheduled in conjunction with the Games include:

Jan. 27 ? A pre-Olympic interfaith program called "Tribute to the Human Spirit: Interfaith Music and Blessings," at 8 p.m. at the Cathedral of the Madeleine. Sponsored by the Interfaith Roundtable, the event will feature seven musical performances from groups of different faiths, and nine blessings offered by a variety of religious leaders. The concert is dedicated to the athletes and volunteers, and blessings will be given "for a harmonious gathering during the Olympics." Attendance is by invitation.

Feb. 10 ? Multifaith service prepared by the Girl Scouts Olympic Wider Opportunity program in conjunction withy the Baha'is of Salt Lake, with a youth discussion on ways to promote world peace, held in the University of Utah Union East Ballroom, at 11 a.m.

Feb. 12 ? Christ Lutheran Family Life Center, 240 E. 5600 South, "Lutherans Welcome the World," an evening of music by the Lutheran school children with a lecture on "Christianity and the Olympic Games" by Paul Maier, Western Michigan University.

Feb. 17 ? Magapuja Day Celebration at the Layton Buddhist Temple, 644 E. 100 North at 10:30 a.m. Ceremony will include chanting by monks, meditation and giving alms to the monks and receiving blessings. Lunch will be served.

Feb. 19 ? Salt Lake Children's Choir will perform at First Presbyterian Church, South Temple and C Street, at 7:30 p.m.

Five free concerts will be performed at St. Mark's Cathedral, 231 E. 100 South. Performers are Celtic and Western bands, Feb. 11 at 7:30 p.m.; Nova chamber concert, Feb. 15 and 16 at 7 p.m.; From Jazz to Classics, Feb. 18 at 7:30 p.m.; Westminster Choir and Rick Knudson, Feb. 20 at 7:30 p.m.

United Church of Christ, 2631 E. Murray-Holladay Road (4785 South), will host Lenten events including a Mardi Gras potluck dinner, Feb. 12 at 6:30 p.m.; Ash Wednesday service Feb. 13 at 6:30 p.m., Lenten meditation service Feb. 20 at 5:30 p.m.

The Christian Science reading rooms will be open, with free access to E-mail home or search for spirituality sites, with the Christian Science Monitor available daily at Crossroads Plaza, 3rd floor, south concourse, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; 352 E. 300 South, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Park City at 333 Main Street Mall, main floor, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Daily guided tours of two area mosques will also be available from 4 to 5 p.m. during the Olympics, with a short presentation and light refreshments. Mosques are located at 740 S. 700 East and 1019 Parkway Ave. (2455 South).

First Presbyterian Church at South Temple and C Street will offer self-guided tours from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily, with musicians performing in the sanctuary. The Salvation Army band will perform as part of worship services on Feb. 9 at 9 and 11 a.m.

The Meditation Center, 1268 E. South Temple, will host sitting meditations at noon and 12:30 p.m., followed by social time at 1 p.m.

The Catholic Church will provide three Olympic hospitality/information centers: Bishop Hunt Center at the Cathedral of the Madeline, 309 E. South Temple, open daily from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.; the Newman Center, 170 S. University St., with Taize prayer and meditations, 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. weekdays, 8 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. on Saturdays, Feb. 11-22. ; St. Mary of the Assumption Catholic Church, 1505 White Canyon Road, Park City, open daily 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. St. Vincent DePaul Soup Kitchen, 437 W. 200 South, serves meals for the homeless daily.

A free calendar produced by the Interfaith Peacemaking Resource Center will be available at all Barnes and Noble bookstores and Salt Lake City libraries.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will also host several previously ticketed events at the Tabernacle and Conference Center downtown. See the Web web site at www.lds.org for further information about performances and updated stand-by ticket information. Additional information is available at the Temple Square Visitors Centers.